Thursday, March 29, 2012

LGCR's Gottlieb To Present At Upcoming Marcellus/Utica Shale Conference At The Greenbrier

LGCR’s Richard Gottlieb will be a speaker at the upcoming Marcellus and Utica Shale Conference and Expo 2012 at The Greenbrier. The event will be April 1-3. Gottlieb has been invited to speak on Tuesday morning, April 3 at 9:15 a.m. His presentation will be on “Marcellus/Utica Regulations and Litigation- Traps for the Unwary.” Gottlieb will discuss recent surface owner litigation; lack of pooling/unitization/lease integration statutes; lack of certainty in PSC regulation of midstream activities – intrastate and gathering lines; and coal-natural gas disputes.

Click to learn more about the conference.

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Shell Selecting Pennsylvania Location For Cracker

Shell Chemical LP (Shell) has signed a land option agreement with Horsehead Corporation to evaluate a site in the U.S. Appalachian region for a potential petrochemical complex. The complex includes an ethane cracker that would upgrade locally produced ethane from Marcellus Shale gas production. The site is located in Potter and Center Townships in Beaver County near Monaca, Pennsylvania.

"This positive development marks another phase as Shell continues to assess the commercial feasibility of a petrochemical complex in the Appalachian region. The next steps for this project include additional environmental analysis of the preferred Pennsylvania site, further engineering design studies, assessment of the local ethane supply, and continued evaluation of the economic viability of the project," according to a press release from Shell.

“We are very pleased to have signed this site option agreement,” said Dan Carlson, General Manager, New Business Development, Shell Chemicals. “This is an important step for the project, and we look forward to working with the communities in Pennsylvania, and gas producers across Appalachia, as we continue our efforts to develop a petrochemical complex.”

Click to read Shell's press release.

W.Va. DEP Launches Horizontal Drilling Web Site

The W.Va. Department of Environmental Protection’s Office of Oil and Gas has launched a webpage that contains information specifically related to horizontal drilling as defined by the Horizontal Drilling Act that was passed by the state Legislature in December.

As part of the Act, the Legislature required the DEP to create the page so citizens could obtain information about the location of proposed horizontal wells and give them the opportunity to comment on those permit applications.

Currently, the page offers links to items that will be further developed as permit applications are received by the agency. Links to pages that allow citizens to submit or review comments about specific permit applications, as well as a link to a tool that helps them find the location of a proposed well, are included.

“The page will continue to grow and change as more permit applications are submitted to the agency,” said James Martin, Chief of the Office of Oil and Gas. “Soon, after we populate the site with applications that have been received, people will be able to see a list with information such as the applicant, where the well is located, the formation it targets, whether the well has been completed and the date the permit was issued.”

Click here to see the web site.

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Reducing Permit Time, Developing Regulations Key Priorities Of The W.Va. Office of Oil & Gas

During a call today with horizontal producers hosted by Lewis Glasser, the Chief of the W.Va. Office of Oil & Gas said his agency is working diligently to reduce the time to issue a horizontal drilling permit. Chief James Martin said he expects to cut the current 104-day permit issuance time period to about 45-50 days. He said his agency is adding staff people and inspectors in order to meet new regulatory requirements of the state's Horizontal Well Act, which was enacted in December 2011. Martin said the DEP Secretary has set it as a priority to cut the permit issuance time in half within the next few months.

As for the development of a set of regulations required by the state's new horizontal production law, Martin said he thinks his agency will have this done by early May. At that time the regulations will be issued for public comment and then undergo the formal regulatory review process. The plan is to have the regulations finalized for consideration and final adoption during the 2013 session of the W.Va. Legislature.

Monday, March 12, 2012

W.Va. DEP Issues Proposed Stormwater Pollution Control Permit For Natural Gas Drilling, Construction Activities

The West Virginia Department of Environmental Protection, Division of Water and Waste Management is proposing to issue a State General Water Pollution Control Permit to regulate the discharge of stormwater runoff associated with oil and natural gas related construction activities. The General Permit will authorize discharges composed entirely of stormwater associated with oil and natural gas field activities or operations associated with exploration, production, processing or treatment operations or transmission facilities, disturbing one acre or greater of land area, to the waters of the state. It is proposed that this General Permit be issued for a four-year term.

A public hearing has been scheduled to take comments on the Draft Permit. The hearing has been scheduled for 6 p.m. on April 9, 2012, at the Coopers Rock Training Room, WV DEP Headquarters, 601 57th Street SE, Charleston, WV 25304.

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Office Of Oil & Gas Chief To Update Horizontal Producers

James Martin, Chief of the Office of Oil & Gas/W.Va. DEP, will be participating on Lewis Glasser’s upcoming conference call for horizontal producers. The call is set for Tuesday, March 13 at 11:30 a.m. The conference call will provide a recap of the 2012 legislative proceedings and an update on the regulation development process for the state’s new horizontal well act.

Lewis Glasser regularly hosts these calls as a way to share information and discuss strategic opportunities among the state's horizontal production community.