EQT completes $6.6 billion acquisition of Rice Energy

EQT Corp. has completed its acquisition of Rice Energy Inc. following the recent approval of the $6.6 billion deal by EQT and Rice Energy shareholders , reports the Pittsburgh Business Times. The newspaper says the merger of the Pennsylvania-based companies, which operate in the Marcellus and Utica shale plays, creates the largest independent natural gas producer in the country. For more, read the full story.

Ohio, Pennsylvania, West Virginia

Official says Weirton area should be considered for ethane 'cracker' plant

Upon learning of China Energy's plans to invest $83.7 billion to develop West Virginia's shale gas and chemical industries, Business Development Corp. of the Northern Panhandle Director Patrick Ford said the Chinese firm should look at the Weirton, West Virginia area as a site for an ethane "cracker" plant, reports the Times Leader in Martins Ferry, Ohio. Ford said Weirton was in the running for the Royal Dutch Shell and PTT Global Chemical cracker projects, but did not have enough contiguous acreage to offer the companies at the time. "Now, we are ready," he said, pointing to potential sites that include the former Weirton Steel Corp. property along the Ohio River. For more, read the full story.

Global, West Virginia

Chinese company to invest $83.7 billion in West Virginia shale, chemical industries

West Virginia officials say they have an agreement that calls for China Energy Investment Corp. to invest $83.7 billion in shale gas development and chemical manufacturing in the state over 20 years, according to the Associated Press. The news service says West Virginia Commerce Secretary Woody Thrasher and China Energy President Ling Wen signed the memorandum in Beijing as part of a U.S.-China trade mission during President Donald Trump's recent visit there. West Virginia officials say project planning will focus on power generation, chemical manufacturing and underground storage of natural gas liquids and derivatives. For more, read the full story.

Global, West Virginia

Chesapeake boosts production with new well-completion techniques

Chesapeake Energy has been using new well-completion techniques to coax more production from its oil and natural gas holdings in the Utica shale play, according to the Canton Repository. The newspaper says the company reported the new completion techniques improved 120-day Utica well results by 25%, and that Chesapeake plans to continue testing new completion methods in the Utica and Marcellus shale formations. For more, read the full story.

Ohio

Study: Natural gas prices down significantly since start of Marcellus shale boom

A new study by researchers at the University of Pennsylvania has found that natural gas prices have "decreased significantly," including up to 40% for residential consumers, since the Marcellus shale drilling boom began 10 years ago, according to the Pittsburgh Business Times. Looking at data from between 2007 and 2016, the study also found that industrial and commercial natural gas costs fell between 44% and 65%, and commodity rates that distribution companies are permitted to charge customers dropped 72%. For more, read the full story.

Pennsylvania

Shell names new vice president to lead ethane 'cracker' project

Royal Dutch Shell has named Hilary Mercer as the new vice president for the company's ethane "cracker" plant project in Beaver County, Pennsylvania, reports the Beaver County Times. The newspaper says Mercer, who has spent the last 30 years working for Shell in a variety of roles, replaces Ate Visser, vice president of the project since 2014. Mercer will oversee all aspects of the Beaver County project, including construction of the plant, safety issues, production and customer relations. For more, read the full story.

Pennsylvania

DeWine sues Rover Pipeline for discharges into waterways

Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine has filed suit against Rover Pipeline LLC for alleged illegal discharges into waterways during construction of a natural-gas pipeline across the state, reports the Columbus Dispatch. The newspaper says DeWine's office filed the complaint, State of Ohio v. Rover Pipeline, LLC, in Stark County Common Pleas County in Canton on behalf of the Ohio Environmental Protection Agency. The lawsuit alleges that Rover violated environmental and clean-water laws by discharging drilling fluids and sediment-laden storm water while building the pipeline, according to the Dispatch. For more, read the full story.

Ohio, Oil & Gas Litigation

Senate approves FERC nominees to fill out commission

The U.S. Senate has approved two more members of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) that oversees the nation's power grid and natural gas pipelines, including President Donald Trump's choice for chairman, reports the Associated Press. The news service says senators approved Republican Kevin McIntyre to chair the commission and Democrat Richard Glick to round out the five-member panel. The commission was without a quorum for six months earlier this year. For more, read the full story.

National

Energy Transfer Partners closes sale of stake in Rover Pipeline

Business Wire reports that Energy Transfer Partners has announced that its subsidiaries, Energy Transfer Interstate Holdings and ET Rover Pipeline (“HoldCo”), have closed the previously announced sale of a 49.9% interest in HoldCo to Blackstone Energy Partners. As a result of the closing, HoldCo is now owned 50.1% by Energy Transfer and 49.9% by Blackstone. Upon completion, the 713-mile Rover Pipeline will be able to transport 3.25 billion cubic feet of natural gas per day from the Marcellus and Utica shale plays to markets across the United States and in Canada. For more, read the full story.

National, Ohio, Pennsylvania, West Virginia

Chesapeake says Justice Department has dropped probes of royalty, land practices

The U.S. Department of Justice has ended a three-year investigation of Chesapeake Energy Corp.’s oil and natural gas royalty payment and land purchase practices without taking action, according to Reuters. The news service reports that Chesapeake said in a recent securities filing that the Justice Department advised it on September 19, 2017 that it had concluded the probes. The department had subpoenaed documents from the company in 2014 after dozens of landowners and others accused it of short-changing them on royalties for natural gas and other fuels. For more, read the full story.

National, Ohio
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