The Marcellus Shale| January 2021
The Marcellus Shale is the largest gas play onshore in the US. Located in the Northeast, it supplies the high demand markets along the East Coast. Most of the basin’s gas is produced through unconventional methods, while the little oil produced is mostly by conventional means. Some of the top formations include Onondaga and the Huntersville.
State Drilling Statistics (End of January)
Active Drilling Rigs in Basin- 30
Total Rigs in Pennsylvania- 18
Total Rigs in United States- 384
Total U.S. Rigs down 56% YTD
Marcellus Top Producers
Top Gas Producer- Cabot Oil & Corp.
Top Condensate Producer- Range Resources Appalachia LLC
Baltimore Sues Industry for Damages
The city of Baltimore is suing more than a dozen oil and gas companies for damages associated with rising tides, extreme weather, and stronger hurricanes. This is not the first time a city, county, or state has sued an oil and gas company, but the broad targeted scope raises questions of precedence. A federal district judge decided that it was okay to try Baltimore’s lawsuit, in state, rather than a federal arena where these problems are typically sorted out based on a single jurisdictional rule. After the Fourth US Circuit Court of Appeals affirmed the decisions, Exxon, Chevron, Shell, and other companies being sued went further with filings. The operators in the Marcellus basin who are being sued are pressing the court to consider the consequences of allowing state courts to have jurisdictions over these lawsuits. If it is decided that Baltimore can try this case in state, there are 23 other city, county, and state governments that have filed similar lawsuits and can try the issues in their state courts. This would mean that arguments centered around the federal Clean Air Act, and other federal guidelines, would have less pull in state courts than they initially did in federal courts leaving oil and gas companies in a much more vulnerable position. What started as a purely technical suit is evolving into a much bigger foreshadowing of what courts nationwide may expect (or not expect) to encounter.
People Don’t Like Injection Wells
Pennsylvania Governor Tom Wolf is receiving please from environmental groups to cancel a waste injection well. Penneco Environmental Solutions LLC applied for a UIC permit for this well six years ago. In that time, hundreds of locals had voiced their opposition on the grounds of the constitutional right to clean air and water. Some even appealed the states decision, but have now dropped the appeal saying the litigation would be too expensive and likely futile. The most recent letter to the governor alleged that the well has engineering inadequacies and risks earthquakes, water contamination, and rivers full of radioactive materials. A spokesperson from the governor addressed the issue saying that he alone does not have the power to revoke or suspend permits, and pointed to the Department of Environmental Protection who had previously given the project a green light. The project is aiming to be operational by March, but the surrounding residents are doing their best to rally more people to their cause.
Top Gas Producers (2020 cum)
Top Condensate Producers (2020 cum)
Top Oil Producers (2020 cum)
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