Shale Gas News – February 22, 2020

Bill desRosiers
External Affairs Coordinator, Cabot Oil & Gas

The Shale Gas News, heard every Saturday at 10 AM on 94.3 FM, 1510 AM, 1600 AM, 104.1 FM and Sundays on YesFM, talked about Biomass, natural gas production, compressor station cyber attack and much more last week.

The Shale Gas News has grown again to the Williamsport area on stations WEJS 1600 AM & 104.1 FM. 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 and now the Williamsport area. The Shale Gas News is aired on Saturday or Sunday depending on the station.

Every Saturday Rusty Fender, Matt Henderson and I host a morning radio show to discuss all things natural gas. This week, as a guest, we had George Stark, Director, External Affairs at Cabot Oil & Gas. We also replayed some interviews from the recent State of American Energy Event put on by the American Petroleum Institute (API).

Shale Gas News

The Shale Gas News, typically, is broadcast live. On the February 22nd show (click above), we covered the following new territory (see news excerpts below):

  • Biomass, Like So Many Other Renewable Scams, Can’t Make It on Its Own. Biomass is yet another example of a renewables scam propped up by a whole host of indirect ratepayer and direct taxpayer subsidies to special interests. Over the years, our posts at MasterResource have documented the environmental problems of wood/plant/garbage-generated electricity, as well as opposition from environmental groups. Biomass is “the air pollution renewable.” Last summer, Kennedy Maize documented the lost luster of government-enabled waste-to-energy power plants, such as the Wheelabrator plant near Baltimore and the Detroit Renewable Energy plant.
  • Free Energy: That’s What the Southern Tier Offers and Cuomo Has Denied. Free energy is what we have to offer in the Southern Tier, if only we had a Governor who gave a damn. Vic Furman says he does care and he has a plan.  What If the nearly 12 acre Stow manufacturing plant, that was once a bustling manufacturing site in the 60s and 70s, yet now sits empty, what if it could once again grow into thousands of stable high paying jobs?  What if we set aside the Conklin industrial Park, or a few hundred acres of land near the triple cities, to build a real industrial park that produced something more than all those tax deals Andrew Cuomo throws out to wealthy corporations in hopes of attracting them to New York at our expense?
  • Study funded in part by PA DEP finds no evidence fracking waste harming Pennsylvania streams. A new federal study failed to find evidence that oil and gas production in northern Pennsylvania has contaminated the commonwealth’s forest rivers and streams, providing a timely counterweight to the vows to ban fracking being made by some Democratic presidential candidates. The study, which was published Feb. 3 in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS), one of the world’s most prestigious scientific journals, concluded that there were no signs that chemicals or wastewater from fracking wells had entered more than two dozen streams running through the gas fields of the Marcellus Shale formation. There was also no evidence found that fracking had significantly altered the volume and makeup of the microscopic creatures in the water or had changed the chemical composition of the water itself.
  • EIA: Shale NatGas Production Declines First Time in 39 Months. We knew this day would come (although we secretly wished it never would). Our favorite government agency, the U.S. Energy Information Administration, yesterday released our favorite monthly report–the Drilling Productivity Report (DPR). The DPR chronicles how much oil and gas the country’s seven largest shale plays produced last month and their prediction for the coming month. For the first time in 39 months, the combined natural gas output of the seven shale plays will decrease instead of increase. But what a run it’s been! With gas prices in the basement and drillers slashing budgets and people, this was bound to happen. However, shale oil output will hit a new record in March: 9.18 million barrels per day.
  • Bottom Drops Out: Feb Natural Gas Price Lowest in 20 Years. More obsessing and hand-wringing over the low price of natural gas (we can’t help it!). Our favorite government agency, the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) published a post on Friday that points out the NYMEX price of natural gas has hit its lowest level for a February day in the past 20 years, closing at $1.77/MMBtu on Feb. 10 (up slightly since then). EIA also points out these are the lowest absolute prices (for any day in any month) we’ve seen in the past four years–since the price crash of 2016. Again, the price crash is happening in February! Yuck.
  • Natural Gas Compressor Station Shut Down by Cyber Attack. A U.S.-based compressor station facility had to shut down operations for two days after sustaining a cyber attack that prevented personnel from receiving crucial real-time operational data from control and communication equipment, according to the Dept. of Homeland Security. We do not know if the compressor was located in the Marcellus/Utica or another shale play. We do know this is a serious–and an increasing problem. We consider it cyber terrorism.
  • Jail Time for Bypassing Emissions Controls on Marcellus Trucks. In September 2018, MDN brought you the news that six men had been charged with conspiring to illegally alter emissions systems on 30+ trucks with heavy-duty diesel engines, trucks used to haul water and wastewater to and from Marcellus Shale wells. All six eventually plead guilty. The wheels of justice grind sloooooowly. The first of the six to receive his sentence happened on Wednesday.

The Shale Gas News sponsored by Linde Corporation

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