Shale Gas News – February 29, 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 the Atlantic Coast pipeline, a National Grid shortage, natural gas prices 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 Pennsylvania State Representative Aaron Kaufer.

Shale Gas News

The Shale Gas News, typically, is broadcast live. On the February 29th show (click above), we covered the following new territory (see news excerpts below):

  • Pipeline Backers Optimistic After Supreme Court Hearing. The Atlantic Coast pipeline appears likely to clear a major legal hurdle after a majority of Supreme Court justices seemed to lean in favor of allowing the project to cross the Appalachian Trail. The high court heard oral arguments Monday in the high-stakes debate over the $8 billion natural gas project, which is planned to pass beneath part of the iconic trail in the George Washington National Forest in central Virginia.
  • US unlikely to consider curtailing fracking, energy secretary says. As the race for the White House heats up, some candidates have been calling for a fracking ban. Now, with parties preparing to vie for votes again, U.S. Energy Secretary Dan Brouillette says the Trump administration is unlikely to consider curtailing fracking activity.
  • Natural Gas Is Crushing Wind and Solar Power. The U.S. Energy Information Administration just announced some spectacular news that should be banner headlines across the country: The price of natural gas has fallen to its lowest February level in 20 years. The data shows that natural gas prices fell to $1.77 per million British thermal units. In inflation-adjusted terms, the price of gas has plunged by some 80% since its high of $13.60 12 years ago. The price is down 90% since 2005, when prices hit nearly $20. (Quick: Can you think of anything else that now costs one-tenth of what it did 15 years ago?) The Energy Information Administration also reports that U.S. natural gas production has hit an all-time high this year.
  • Big oil price jump predicted by report if fracking ends in US. With the gains that Sen. Bernie Sanders has made in the race to be the Democratic nominee for president, and with Sen. Elizabeth Warren still in the race, a question coming into greater focus is: What happens if the U.S. bans fracking? The issue has arisen enough that a panelist on last week’s Nevada debate asked Sanders about his promise to ban fracking immediately upon taking office. Warren has made a similar vow. It’s questionable just where presidential authority to take that step would come from, though a ban on fracking on federal lands certainly seems within the prerogatives of the president.
  • $500M Marcellus-Fed Petchem Plant Coming to Clinton County, PA. A new half-billion-dollar petrochemical plant that would convert Marcellus Shale gas into feedstock (chemicals) to be used in agriculture, manufacturing, medicine, and transportation is getting serious in central Pennsylvania. Frontier Natural Resources and KeyState Agri are working on a plan to bring such a plant to western Clinton County, PA.
  • National Grid Report – There IS a Coming Gas Shortage in NYC/LI. National Grid yesterday released a report outlining how the utility is going to run out of natural gas for its customers within the next decade (maybe sooner) if new supplies of natgas are not made available to it. The company has scheduled public town hall meetings in NYC and Long Island to discuss the report and elicit feedback from the public. In the report, National Grid outlines three solutions to the problem. Guess which solution is the cheapest, quickest and best? That’s right–the Williams Northeast Supply Enhancement (NESE) pipeline.
  • Chevron Cutting 320 Jobs in Marcellus/Utica Beginning April 6th. By the end of this year, Chevron will have eliminated 320 jobs in its Marcellus/Utica operation. Some 288 of those positions will be gone from the company’s regional headquarters in Moon Township (Allegheny County, PA), and another 32 will be gone from the company’s Mount Braddock location (Fayette County, PA). The company says it will try to find new assignments for as many people as possible. The layoffs begin on April 6.

The Shale Gas News sponsored by Linde Corporation

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