Tag Archives: Marcellus Shale

U.S. Shale Gas Exports Are ‘Dead in the Water’

Cove Point LNG, under construction, is slated to export gas from the Marcellus Shale to India and Japan. But what if there isn't enough gas to export?
Cove Point LNG is slated to export gas from the Marcellus Shale to India and Japan. But what if there isn’t enough gas to export?

By Jim Flood, ieefa.org

The potential for exports of U.S. natural gas is not as rosy as proponents once imagined, said two panelists at this week’s New Energy Finance 2015 conference.

Here’s Charlie Blanchard of Bloomberg New Energy Finance: “We don’t think that Pennsylvania gas makes it to Miami, much less Tokyo. There’s really only enough of it to supply the eastern U.S. There’s not so much of it that we can export it everywhere.”

Deborah Lawrence of Energy Policy Forum painted a more dire picture, asserting that shale exports are “dead in the water” and that U.S. shale production will peak between 2018 and 2020. Continue reading U.S. Shale Gas Exports Are ‘Dead in the Water’

Drones Could Be Used to Monitor Fracking Infrastructure

Surveillance drone in action.
Surveillance drone in action.

By Tom Knox, Columbus Business First

Drones could soon be buzzing over oil and gas infrastructure in eastern Ohio as engineering firms eye the devices as a cost-saving way to better survey massive developments.

The use of drones – small, unmanned aerial vehicles that are increasingly finding business uses – is already happening in the Utica shale play, but it’s nascent. Uses range from flying over new and existing pipelines for maintenance to reviewing large projects that a potential buyer wants to ensure are in solid shape. Drones could be cheaper than manned airplanes and record better images from multiple angles. Continue reading Drones Could Be Used to Monitor Fracking Infrastructure

Dominion ‘Going to Get Our Share’ of Marcellus Buildout

Dominion_Appalachian_Market_AccessBy Joe Fisher, Natural Gas Intel

Dominion CEO Tom Farrell says his company’s pipeline infrastructure makes up “the spine of the Marcellus/Utica shale.” On Monday he outlined how Dominion is working a slate of producer-push and market-pull infrastructure projects to meet the region’s continually growing demand for takeaway capacity.

“There’s a lot of infrastructure demand to get the gas out of the Marcellus and Utica region,” Farrell said during a meeting with financial analysts following the company. “We’re obviously not going to get all of this, but we’re going to get our share of it.”

For instance, the company is about midway through a package of producer-push projects, what it calls “producer outlet projects.” Dominion started with nine projects and completed the first five of them last year. These were small affairs costing a combined $100 million. The four remaining projects will cost about $400 million. “All will come online next year,” Farrell said. Continue reading Dominion ‘Going to Get Our Share’ of Marcellus Buildout

New York Agency Seeks Public Comments on Constitution Pipeline

By Sue Heavenrich, The Marcellus Effect

Today the NYS Department of Environmental Conservation announced it is seeking public comments on the Draft State Permit Applications for proposed construction of the Interstate Constitution Pipeline. Public comments will be accepted through Jan. 30, 2015

The public is invited to comment on permit applications the State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) received for the proposed, federally regulated Constitution Pipeline and an upgrade to the Iroquois Wright Compressor station in Schoharie County that is part of the project.

The 30-inch Constitution Pipeline is a proposed interstate natural gas pipeline that would traverse 124 miles though Broome, Chenango, Delaware and Schoharie counties, transporting 650,000 dekatherms of gas per day – enough to serve approximately 3 million homes. Continue reading New York Agency Seeks Public Comments on Constitution Pipeline

Even with Ban, New York Can’t Escape Effects of Fracking

By Anne Meador

Last week Governor Andrew Cuomo banned fracking in New York, citing public health risks. Fracktivists rejoiced, relieved that their state won’t go the way of neighboring Pennsylvania. Pocked with fracking wells, the mountainous counties of northeast Pennsylvania have suffered from contaminated water supplies, earthquakes, spoiled countryside and thunderous truck traffic. As long as the fracking ban is in place, New Yorkers won’t be threatened by methane emissions and toxic fumes from fracking wells, wastewater pools or the risk of a well blowing up or leaking uncontrollably.

Unfortunately, just because New York banned fracking, and even though more than 150 New York municipalities have banned fracking using local zoning laws, the state won’t escape its effects. In fact, New York is already burdened with the fracking industry’s health and safety problems and threats to the environment because of gas infrastructure.


Photo by Peter Eliscu


Gas companies are building pipelines to service increasing demand in New York City. In spite of opposition from groups like OccupythePipeline concerned about radon exposure and the risk of explosion, Spectra Energy’s pipeline, which runs under Greenwich Village, went into service in November 2013.

On December 1, gas began to flow through the Northeast Connector Project, which will deliver 647,000 dekatherms daily from York County, PA to 1.8 million natural gas customers in Brooklyn, Queens, Staten Island and Long Island. The new delivery point will shift from Long Island to the Rockaway Peninsula via the Rockaway Lateral Project, a disputed 26-inch diameter pipeline currently being constructed under popular beaches, a golf course, and a federally protected wildlife refuge. Continue reading Even with Ban, New York Can’t Escape Effects of Fracking

A (very) Brief History of the New York Frack Ban Movement

By Chip Northrup, No Fracking Way

Or, What the Frack Really Happened ?

An Overly Simplistic Explanation of Why New York Did Not Get Fracked

We can summarize why fracking was prohibited in New York with a simple construct  – the cost/ benefit ratio – what the environmental risks and economic costs would be to the state and it citizens vs the benefits of shale gas industrialization. Initially, this ratio appeared to be tilted very much in favor of  fracking  – at least in the popular press and in the corridors of power – because the gas industry had grossly overstated the benefits of shale gas development while categorically denying the risks and collateral damage associated with fracking.

Note too that the political cost / benefit for the Governor was almost always in favor of fracking – given his purported political ambitions. Meaning it is entirely possible that he prohibited fracking to the possible detriment of his own ambitions. This is of course, exactly the kind of politician that deserves to be in office, the courageous ones.

Since at the outset of the debate, there were few peer-reviewed studies on the hazards, the benefit of the doubt on the risks went to the frackers. The media was dependent on the industry regarding the geology, so the industry exaggerated and said the shale would support tens of thousands of jobs and hundreds of millions in tax revenue annually. Continue reading A (very) Brief History of the New York Frack Ban Movement

Waterkeepers Chesapeake: Deep Disappointment in Governor O’Malley’s Decision to Allow Fracking in Maryland

Fracking well in Montoursville, PA. Photo by Wendy Lynne Lee.
Fracking well in Montoursville, PA. Photo by Wendy Lynne Lee.

By Waterkeepers Chespeake

Governor O’Malley finally answered the question of if or when to allow fracking in Maryland with his release yesterday of final recommendations for regulating hydraulic fracturing for natural gas in Western Maryland. Maryland did apply the breaks and approach the question of whether or not to frack with caution through analysis by the Marcellus Shale Advisory Commission, unlike Pennsylvania and West Virginia that have rushed to frack. Unfortunately, the commission’s analysis, especially with regards to public health and risks assessment, is seriously flawed and ignores tens of thousands of Marylanders who oppose fracking.

The threats to western Maryland’s economy, water resources, forests and people are very real, even with all of the best management practices in place. Accidents and failures with all aspects of fracking do and will happen. It has become increasingly clear that fracking cannot be done safely, so the safest strategy for drilling for gas in Maryland — and any state — is to not drill for that gas at all. Continue reading Waterkeepers Chesapeake: Deep Disappointment in Governor O’Malley’s Decision to Allow Fracking in Maryland

Google Earth Tour of Oil and Gas Wells, Pads and Impoundments

The vast number and dense concentration of oil and gas wells–many of them fracking wells–in Colorado, Wyoming, Louisiana, Texas and Pennsylvania is absolutely shocking. Tour of Pennsylvania wells begins at 14:10. Impoundments are toxic fracking wastewater ponds. There are more than 500 in Pennsylvania alone.