External Affairs Coordinator, Cabot Oil & Gas
The Shale Gas News, heard every Saturday at 10 AM on 94.3 FM, 1510 AM and Sundays on YesFM, talked about record natural gas production, the shale gas boom, Shell Cracker jobs and much more last week.
The Shale Gas News has grown again; welcome Gem 104 as our FOURTH station! Gem 104 helps to solidify the Shale Gas News coverage in an important Marcellus region, PA’s northern tier. The Shale Gas News is now broadcasting in Bradford, Lackawanna, Lancaster, Lebanon, Luzerne, Lycoming, Pike, Sullivan, Susquehanna, Tioga and Wayne Counties, as well as in greater central PA. The Shale Gas News is aired on Saturday or Sunday depending on the station.
Every Saturday Rusty Fender and I host a morning radio show to discuss all things natural gas. This week, as a guest, we had George Stark, Director of External Affairs at Cabot Oil & Gas.
The Shale Gas News, typically, is broadcast live. On the April 14th show (click above), we covered the following new territory (see news excerpts below):
- U.S. saw record natural gas production in 2017. U.S. natural gas production reached record levels last year, according to the U.S. Department of Energy, an increase that substantially boosted exports even as Texas, the largest gas-producing state, lost some of its momentum. Gross withdrawals reached 90.9 billion cubic feet per day in 2017, the agency’s highest volume on record. Marketed natural gas production, which does not include gas vented, flared, used for re-pressuring or removed during processing, also reached record levels.
- Whitehouse unveils bill directing study, pilot program for natural gas demand response. U.S. Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse (D-R.I.) introduced legislation on Wednesday that calls on the U.S. Department of Energy to study natural gas demand response, and directs federal regulators to develop a pilot program using the latest technology. While demand response has long been recognized for its use in the electric sector, the idea has so far gained limited traction in the gas industry, despite a few utilities beginning to experiment. Gas demand response could help address constraints when demand spikes, helping stabilize prices and maintain reliability.
- What Will It Take to Keep Up With Shale Gas Boom? $170 Billion. Bottlenecks on the U.S. natural gas super highway are starting to stack up, raising concerns about whether infrastructure can be built fast enough to meet surging supplies. Gas output will expand by 24 billion cubic feet, or 32 percent, through 2025 from last year, according to U.S. Energy Information Administration estimates. To support that growth, the country’s gas industry needs to spend $170 billion over the next seven years on pipelines, compressor stations, export terminals and other related infrastructure, said Meg Gentle, chief executive officer of gas exporter Tellurian Inc.
- Fracking Trespass Case (Rule of Capture) Still Reverberating in PA. Last week MDN brought you the news that the Pennsylvania Superior Court handed down a decision that has the power to greatly restrict, perhaps even stop, Marcellus drilling in PA. The issue, in brief, is that last week’s Superior Court decision disallows using an age-old principle called the “rule of capture” when it comes to shale drilling and fracking. It opens the door to a myriad of frivolous lawsuits claiming that a fracture, a crack created during fracking, is draining gas from a neighbor’s property without justly compensating the neighbor for the gas.
- Just What is Cabot Looking for in Ohio – NatGas, Oil or NGLs? Two days ago MDN revealed which rock layers Cabot Oil & Gas is targeting with new test wells in central Ohio. Today we answer the question, What does Cabot hope to find? Cabot representative Brittany Ramos told an area newspaper that the company is looking for, “a hydrocarbon, an oil, natural gas, natural gas liquid, something, in the layers below the Utica Shale, but the only way to find that out is to actually drill a well and test.” In other words, they don’t know. They know *something* is down there, but they aren’t sure what. We suspect they’re hoping it’s either oil or NGLs.
- More Workers Needed for Shell Cracker Plant, Unions Gear Up Training. Last Thursday Pittsburgh’s KDKA-TV hosted an event called “Eye on Beaver County” in Beaver, PA–a celebration of Beaver and a discussion about the county’s future. An 11-member panel discussed the past, present and future of the county. The discussion, as you might imagine, quickly turned to Shell’s $6 billion ethane cracker, going up in Monaca even as you read this. A Shell rep and several reps from labor unions were on hand to discuss the manpower issue. The short version is this: Unions for carpenters, ironworkers, steamfitters, and heavy equipment operators need more members, more people to help build the facility. Like, now. The unions offer free training.
- Latest OH Wayne Natl Forest Auction a Bust – Leases Go for $3/Acre. The fifth auction by the federal Bureau of Land Management (BLM) of federally-owned acreage in Wayne National Forest (WNF) to allow shale drilling was, in a word, a bust. The first four auctions offered up a total of 2,396 acres in total, and sold for over $8 million (average of $3,354 signing bonus per acre). The fifth auction of two smaller parcels–39.6 acres in Monroe County, and 305.8 acres in Noble County–sold for a piddly $2 and $3 signing bonuses per acre, respectively. What in the world happened?.
The Shale Gas News sponsored by Linde Corporation