Bechtel will build Belmont County cracker

Thai petrochemical giant PTT Global Chemical has selected Bechtel Oil, Gas & Chemicals to build the Belmont County ethane cracker plant, according to S & P Global. Bechtel is also building a Shell cracker in Monaca, Pennsylvania. Ethane cracker plants could spur economic growth in the region; two large-scale projects in close proximity could encourage workers to relocate here rather than coming in to work on a project-by-project basis. Utica and Marcellus could support four additional cracker plants, according to the U.S. Department of Energy, further increasing development potential. The Belmont County plant will site on a former coal-fired power plant in Mead Township.

Ohio

WV high court sides with Antero in implied surface easement dispute

Law 360 reports that the West Virginia Supreme Court has issued its ruling in the matter of Robert L. Andrews et al. v. Antero Resources Corp. et al. The court addressed whether the plaintiff landowners were unreasonably and substantially burdened by the defendant gas developers’ activities on and around their land. The majority opinion held that the plaintiffs failed to present evidence of such a burden, particularly on the issue of whether Antero’s activities to develop the mineral estate were reasonably necessary. In addition, the court found that the landowners’ stated “…annoyances, inconveniences, and discomforts” in relation to Antero’s activities on the property “simply do not rise to the level of a substantial burden” as required by West Virginia case law.

The 3-2 decision affirms the lower court’s ruling that the defendants acted in accordance with their implied rights to use the surface estates. Justice Jenkins wrote the majority opinion. In dissent, Justice Workman criticized the majority for failing to provide any guidance on the interplay of the competing rights of a surface landowner and a mineral estate owner. Law 360 notes that this type of conflict between oil & gas E&P companies and landowners is on the rise in West Virginia; it's expected that the number will only continue to grow because of the prevalence of split surface and mineral estates in the Appalachian region.

West Virginia

Construction begins on critical Ashtabula County pipeline

Construction of the Ohio portion of the Risberg Line has begun, reports the Ashtabula Star Beacon. Once complete, the Risberg Line will flow 55 million cubic feet per day (MMcf/d) of gas from Pennsylvania to the northern tip of Ohio in Ashtabula County. It is expected that the pipeline will help address Ashtabula County’s natural gas needs. The county has suffered from a shortage of natural gas in the past which has impacted its ability to attract certain industries. RH energytrans, the company that will build and own the line, plans to finish construction in early summer. Read the full story.

Ohio, Pennsylvania

New PJM report demonstrates potential costs of FirstEnergy nuclear bailout

A new study shows that Ohio House Bill 6, which subsidizes FirstEnergy Solutions’ two Ohio nuclear plants, could cost Ohio ratepayers even more than the hundreds of millions of dollars in direct charges proposed to prop up the nuclear plants and two older coal plants. The analysis from grid operator PJM concludes that keeping FirstEnergy’s nuclear plants open could, in addition, cost ratepayers as much as $16 million per year in lost savings by discouraging cheaper gas generation from coming online. Read the full story.  

Ohio

Another step up in Ohio shale well activity

The Youngstown Business Journal reports that the ODNR granted 17 new permits last week: two to Hillcorp Energy in Columbiana County, eight to Ascent Resources Utica LLC in Jefferson and Belmont counties and seven to Rice Drilling LLC in Belmont County. Read the full story.

Ohio

Ohio's top shale oil and gas producers

Ohio’s top ten shale oil and gas producers for 2018, according to Columbus Business First:

1.       Ascent Resources Utica LLC

2.       Gulfport Energy Corp.

3.       Rice Drilling D LLC

4.       Chesapeake Exploration LLC

5.       Antero Resources Corp.

6.       Eclipse Resources I LP

7.       CNX Gas Company LLC

8.       Equinor USA Onshore Properties

9.       XTO Energy Inc.

10.     Gulfport Appalachia LLC

Production wells on this list are concentrated in the east-central and southeast Ohio counties of Belmont, Monroe, Harrison, Jefferson, Carroll, Columbiana, Noble and Guernsey. Rankings were determined by production in thousands of cubic feet; production information was obtained from the ODNR.

Ohio

ODNR permitting process under way for injector wells in Richland Township

Omni Energy Group has filed for a permit to site two saltwater injection wells near the intersection of U.S. 40 and Ohio 331 near St. Clairsville, the Intelligencer Wheeling News-Register reports. Residents voiced concerns about pollution, noise and increased truck traffic related to the potential siting. The CEO of Omni stated that “[Omni wants to] be the best neighbor and best part of the community we can be.” The permitting process is ongoing with no finite deadline. Read the full story.

 

Ohio

Findlay-based Marathon Petroleum merger could benefit midstream growth in Ohio basin

A planned merger of Marathon entities MPLX and Andeavor Logistics will expand “[Marathon’s] geographic footprint” in the Ohio basin, the Dayton Daily News reports. Marathon’s CEO anticipates growth and value-creation opportunities as a result. Likewise, low oil prices may spur consolidation between Anadarko Petroleum and Occidental Petroleum. 

Ohio

Belmont County tops Utica Shale activity

The New Philadelphia Times-Reporter’s weekly roundup of Utica Shale activity, for the week ended April 27, 2019. Belmont County tops the list with 629 permits, followed by Carroll County at 525 and Harrison County at 470. There are 2,179 producing Utica wells in Ohio.

Ohio

Jefferson County to break into top five

According to the Ohio Oil and Gas Association, Jefferson County will soon become one of the top five natural gas producing counties in the state. The energy industry is emphasizing production in the region with its Shale Crescent campaign and Ascent Resources, with 29 of the top 40 producing wells in Ohio, is focusing drilling in Smithfield, Mount Pleasant and Cross Creek. Currently there are 229 permitted drilling sites in Jefferson County. Read the full story, including production and permitting data from surrounding counties, here.

 

Ohio
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