Rig counts more than double in Pennsylvania, Ohio compared to a year ago

The number of natural gas drilling rigs working in Pennsylvania and Ohio has more than doubled from a year ago, reports the Pittsburgh Business Times. The newspaper says Baker Hughes' weekly rig count on July 14 showed there are 34 rigs operating in Pennsylvania compared to 13 at the beginning of July 2016. There are 27 rigs working in Ohio, up from 12 last July, according to the Business Times, and 13 rigs in West Virginia compared to 10 a year ago. For more, read the full story.

Ohio, Pennsylvania, West Virginia

Appalachia looks to land petrochemical plant investments

The northern Appalachian states, already enriched by the natural gas boom, are hoping “the surge in fossil fuel production will help them feed the world's growing demand for plastics and chemicals,” CNBC reports. While Appalachia's share of the $181 billion in planned investments in petrochemical plants is relatively small at roughly $16 billion, the news network says the American Chemistry Council and regional boosters believe states such as Pennsylvania, Ohio, Kentucky and West Virginia “are positioned to capitalize on growing demand for plastics around the world.” For more, read the full story.

Ohio, Pennsylvania, West Virginia

Virginia court rules in favor of pipeline company in surveying dispute

The Supreme Court of Virginia has ruled in favor of the company developing the Atlantic Coast Pipeline from West Virginia to North Carolina in a lawsuit involving a landowner who sought to keep surveyors off her property, reports the Associated Press. The news service says that in Palmer v. Atlantic Coast Pipeline LLC, property owner Hazel Palmer argued a Virginia law allowing surveying privileges shouldn't apply because the pipeline company is organized under Delaware law. The Court disagreed, ruling that Palmer's property rights don't allow her to exclude surveyors for the natural gas pipeline. For more, read the full story.

National, Oil & Gas Litigation, West Virginia

Consol outlines plans to separate natural gas, coal operations

Consol Energy Inc., which has operations in the Utica shale play, has laid out plans for splitting the company, including separation of its natural gas business, reports the Pittsburgh Business Times. Citing details from a Consol filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, the newspaper says a still-to-be-named company would hold the natural gas business. In addition, a spinoff company would own Consol’s three coal mines in Greene and Washington counties in Pennsylvania, its ownership interest in CNX Coal Resources LP and other coal-related assets. For more, read the full story.

Ohio, Pennsylvania, West Virginia

Noble Energy closes sale of West Virginia, Pennsylvania assets

Houston-based Noble Energy, Inc. announced it has closed the $1.124 billion sale of upstream oil and natural gas assets in northern West Virginia and southern Pennsylvania to HG Energy II Appalachia LLC, a portfolio company of Quantum Energy Partners. Noble also said the closing of a separate midstream transaction divesting its 50% interest in Cone Gathering, LLC to a Quantum portfolio company is still expected to occur in the third quarter of this year. For more, read the full press release.

Pennsylvania, West Virginia

Braskem to build $675 million petrochemical plant in Texas

Brazil-based Braskem will move forward on a $675 million petrochemical project in the Houston area, according to the Houston Business Journal. The newspaper says the company’s board of directors has approved the final investment decision to build the Delta facility next to Braskem’s existing production facilities in La Porte, Texas. Braskem, which has also looked at building an ethane “cracker” plant in West Virginia, expects to start construction on the Delta project this summer and finish it during the first quarter of 2020. For more, read the full story.

National, West Virginia

FERC issues assessment of Mountain Valley Pipeline

The Mountain Valley Pipeline has received its final environmental review ahead of a vote by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) on the 304-mile project that would carry natural gas from the Marcellus shale play through West Virginia and Virginia, reports the Pittsburgh Business Times. The newspaper says the environmental assessment released by FERC “found little permanent adverse effects posed by the pipeline’s construction,” and mitigation plans by the pipeline builders and ones requested by FERC would cut down on many of those impacts. For more, read the full story.

Ohio, Pennsylvania, West Virginia

Duke, Piedmont seek extension of Atlantic Coast Pipeline agreements

Duke Energy and Piedmont Natural Gas want state regulators to approve an extension of natural gas purchase agreements they made with the Atlantic Coast Pipeline that are set to expire on June 30, 2017, reports the Charlotte Business Journal. The newspaper says the agreements, signed in April 2014, can be terminated on June 30 because the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission has not issued a certificate of public convenience and necessity for the 600-mile pipeline. The $5.1 billion pipeline is designed to transport natural gas from the Utica and Marcellus shale plays in Pennsylvania, Ohio and West Virginia to Virginia and North Carolina. For more, read the full story.

Ohio, Pennsylvania, West Virginia

Natural gas equipment manufacturer breaks ground for West Virginia plant

Representatives of Pietro Fiorentini and state and local government officials recently broke ground for the company’s new Weirton, West Virginia facility that will manufacture equipment for the natural gas industry, reports the Wheeling Intelligencer/News-Register. The newspaper says the $5.5 million investment marks Italy-based Pietro Fiorentini’s first permanent manufacturing operation in the United States. The company makes pressure regulators and valves, as well as pressure reducing and metering systems for the oil and gas industry, according to the Intelligencer.  For more, read the full story.

West Virginia

XcL lands shipper commitment for Appalachia connector system

Looking to capitalize on the expected build-out of interstate pipelines for Appalachian natural gas, XcL Midstream has received a binding anchor shipper commitment from an affiliate of Tug Hill Inc. for its new gathering and transport system, according to Platts. The energy site says Pennsylvania-based XcL hopes its Appalachia connector system, now under construction, will be online in time to access the more than 14 billion cubic feet of natural gas takeaway capacity that is expected to enter service in West Virginia, Ohio and southwestern Pennsylvania by the end of 2018. For more, read the full story.

Ohio, Pennsylvania, West Virginia
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