Federal Judge to Interior: Decide Wyoming, Utah Leases

A federal judge in Wyoming last Thursday ordered the U.S. Interior Department to decide on 47 long-pending oil/gas leases. U.S. District Judge Nancy Freudenthal gave the federal agency 30 days to act.

July 4, 2011

Encore, Vanguard Buying Permian Assets

Encore Energy Partners LP (ENP) and its general partner, Vanguard Natural Resources LLC, each are acquiring a 50% stake in producing oil and gas assets in the Permian Basin from a private seller for a total price of $85 million.

June 27, 2011

Ex-EPA Official Sees Higher Fracking Costs Due to Added Safeguards

It’s going to be more costly to conduct hydraulic fracturing (fracking) of shale gas wells in the future due to increased regulation, said a former official with the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

June 10, 2011

California Regulators Want All Gas Pipes Tested

All California operators of intrastate natural gas transmission pipelines must prepare implementation plans to pressure test or replace all pipeline segments that have not been tested or lack sufficient records verifying such tests, according to a proposed decision released last Tuesday by Administrative Law Judge (ALJ) Maribeth Bushey.

May 16, 2011

Industry Brief

Action is pending following hearing of the Washington state legislature’s House Environment Committee, which is considering a Senate-passed measure (SB 5769) calling for the phased closure of the state’s only coal-fired electric generation plant and the construction of a natural gas-fired plant on adjacent property at the Centralia coal facility (see Daily GPI, March 9). A committee staff member told NGI Friday that there is no established date for when the committee will vote on the measure, which is the outgrowth of an agreement earlier this year among Centralia plant operator/owner TransAlta, environmental groups and the state. The legislation is conditioned upon certain state and federal regulatory actions, including getting the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to exempt the coal-fired plant from looming greenhouse gas emissions restrictions, that would save TransAlta some $600 million on emission-control equipment while it still sold power to utilities in the region.

March 21, 2011

House Bill Would ‘Gut Portions’ of EPA’s Authority Under CAA

Democrats on a House Energy and Commerce subcommittee said pending draft legislation would “gut” the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) authority under the Clean Air Act (CAA), but EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson did not go that far.

February 10, 2011

New York County Bans Fracking

The legislature of Tompkins County — which is in west-central New York in the midst of the state’s Marcellus Shale area — has approved a resolution prohibiting the leasing of county-owned land for natural gas drilling that involves hydraulic fracturing (fracking) well stimulation.

December 28, 2010

PG&E Rate Cases Not Slowed by San Bruno Tragedy

Pacific Gas and Electric Co. recently reached an “unprecedented uncontested” settlement in its $1.1 billion pending general rate case, and a previous settlement on its natural gas transmission pipeline and storage system that was reached in August before the deadly San Bruno pipeline rupture is not expected to be delayed, according to utility President Chris Johns.

November 8, 2010

Dynegy Urges Shareholders to Approve Blackstone Merger

After looking for better deals and getting no offers, Houston-based Dynegy Inc. urged its shareholders Tuesday to approve the pending merger with an affiliate of private equity firm The Blackstone Group LP and its $4.50/share offer at an upcoming special shareholders meeting Nov. 17.

October 20, 2010

Pennsylvania Suspends Cabot’s Pending Permits to Drill

The Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) on Thursday immediately suspended its review of Cabot Oil & Gas Corp.’s pending drilling applications statewide and barred the producer from drilling new natural gas wells “for at least one year” in the Dimock Township area of Susquehanna County because of contaminated groundwater.

April 19, 2010