Industry Brief

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) settled a Clean Water Act (CWA) case for wetlands violations, requiring PDC Mountaineer (PDCM) to pay a penalty of $177,500 to resolve violations involving construction activities at Marcellus Shale gas extraction facilities in northern West Virginia. According to EPA, Bridgeport, WV-based PDCM failed to apply for necessary permits to discharge fill materials into wetlands or streams in Harrison County, WV. PDCM, which also agreed to restore and/or complete mitigation projects at four sites in the state pursuant to separate CWA orders, did not admit to violating the CWA. Earlier this month, PDC Energy reported that PDCM, a joint venture of PDC and Lime Rock Partners V LP, completed three horizontal Marcellus wells since mid-September. The wells were expected to be turned-in-line by year’s end, once a permit for a gathering line river crossing is received, PDC said.

November 30, 2012

Canadian Customers Should Lock In Low Prices Before It’s Too Late

After a five-year slide that lopped 75% off prices received by Alberta producers, Canadians are braced to bump into a floor under the buyers’ market for natural gas.

November 27, 2012

Oregon PUC Trims NW Natural Rate Hike

Portland, OR-based NW Natural received less than one-third of the general rate increase it had been seeking as the Oregon Public Utility Commission (PUC) on Monday approved an $8.7 million annual increase, or 1.28%, for the state’s largest natural gas utility.

October 31, 2012

Regulators Approve $130M New Jersey Pipe Replacement

New Jersey Natural Gas (NJNG) Tuesday received approval from the New Jersey Board of Public Utilities (BPU) to implement its Safety Acceleration and Facility Enhancement (SAFE) program, which will replace 276 miles, or about 50%, of the cast iron and unprotected steel mains and associated services in its delivery system over the next four years.

October 24, 2012

PDC Energy Going It Alone in Utica Shale

PDC Energy Inc. received several joint ownership and development proposals for its Utica Shale position in southeast Ohio from potential joint venture (JV) partners, but they “do not meet PDC’s value expectations,” so the Denver-based company will pursue development in the play independently.

September 20, 2012
Utica Researcher: Decline Curve Data Needed for Accurate Output Forecast

Utica Researcher: Decline Curve Data Needed for Accurate Output Forecast

A professor at Ohio’s Cleveland State University (CSU) said permitting activity in the Utica Shale this year is in line with projections but further success in the play depends on obtaining accurate decline curve data for production over a longer period of time.

September 20, 2012

Group: Severance Tax Would Have Doubled Revenue for Pennsylvania

A nonpartisan policy research group in Pennsylvania asserts that the state could have collected almost twice the revenue it has received in impact fees on Marcellus Shale natural gas drilling if it had implemented a severance tax instead.

September 17, 2012

Chimera, Pemex Shale Oil Contract Disputed

Houston-based Chimera Energy Corp. announced on Tuesday that it had received drilling logs from Petroleos Mexicanos (Pemex), the Mexican state-owned petroleum company, and had “formulated a 90-day schedule for the first deployment” of its nonhydraulic shale oil extraction in Mexico’s Chicontepic Basin, even as concerns arose about the accuracy of many of the company’s statements.

September 13, 2012

FERC Clears Second Mississippi Hub Storage Cavern for Service

Sempra Energy subsidiary Sempra U.S. Gas & Power LLC has received authorization from the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission to place a second underground natural gas storage cavern into service at its Mississippi Hub Storage facility located in Simpson County, MS.

August 24, 2012

Industry Briefs

Sunoco Logistics Partners LP said it has received enough binding commitments to enable Permian Express Phase I, a project to transport West Texas crude oil to Gulf Coast markets, to proceed. The binding open season continues and will close on Sept. 6. Permian Express Phase I would provide continuous pipeline service from Wichita Falls, TX, to Nederland/Beaumont, TX, markets. At Wichita Falls, a connection from Basin Pipeline would be provided. Due to the use of existing assets, the capacity to transport 90,000 b/d to Nederland/Beaumont is to be operational in the first quarter of 2013 (see Shale Daily, June 22).

August 22, 2012