The following Shale Directories Members are OPEN for BUSINESS during COVID-19 related shutdown.*
Support them when and how you can!
Allison Crane & Rigging
American Energy Fabrication
EJ Breneman, L.L.C.
Frontier Group of Companies
Furbay Electric, Oil & Gas Division
Green Valley Seed
HYTORC Penn Ohio
Inland Tarp and Liner
MJ Painting Contractor Corp.
Mansfield Crane Service
Marshall County Co-Op – Southern States
NAI Ohio River Corridor
Oglebay Resort and Conference Center
Skycasters Converged Wireless
Zimmerman Steel and Supply Company, Inc.
*list subject to change
Shale Directories Conferences
4th Annual Appalachian Storage Hub Conference
New Date November 5, 2020
Hilton Garden Inn
Southpointe, Canonsburg, PA
8th Annual Utica Downstream
New Date November 19, 2020
New Location: Holiday Inn Belden Village
8th Annual Midstream PA 2020
New Date: December 10, 2020
State College, PA
Latest facts and a rumor from the Marcellus, Utica, and Permian, Eagle Ford Plays
Chesapeake’s Bringing a Rig Up to PA. I’m not surprised. Chesapeake has secured a number of permits last couple of months. Subsequently, they need more rigs. (RUMOR)
BKV Getting Active in NE PA. The Thai company, BKV Operating is a subsidiary of Kalnin Ventures, and Kalnin is the American agent/partner representing Banpu here in the U.S. BKV Operating which constructed a great building in Tunkhannock, is getting more active drilling. The company is well-funded. We have not begun to see BKV Operating secure any permits. (RUMOR)
EQT Buys Chevron Appalachian Assets. EQT Corp. agreed to buy Chevron Corp.’s Appalachian shale assets for $735 million as the biggest producer of U.S. natural gas takes advantage of an industry slump to expand.
The transaction is expected to close by the end of the year, EQT said in a statement on Tuesday. Chevron has been trying to unload its Appalachian gas holdings since late 2019, when it recorded an $11 billion write down for that asset and others amid a swelling domestic gas glut and cratering prices for the furnace and power-plant fuel.
The acquisition is the latest in a string of recent deals where shale drillers are seeking to add scale to cope with a plunge in commodity prices that has left much of the industry unprofitable.
“This acquisition is a natural bolt-on extension of EQT’s dominant position in the core of the southwest Marcellus and supplements our already impressive asset base,” EQT Chief Executive Officer Toby Rice said in the statement.
The Chevron assets include about 100 work-in-progress wells, with a net production capacity of 450 million cubic feet a day, EQT said. It will also give the shale explorer a 31% ownership interest in pipeline company Laurel Mountain Midstream.
EQT indicated it may fund the deal with cash on hand, a revolving credit facility or a separately disclosed issuance of up to 23 million common shares. EQT fell in after-hours trading, dropping 3% to $15.67 at 7:59 p.m. in New York. Chevron fell 0.6%.
EQT has also made a proposal to acquire rival CNX Resources Corp., people familiar with the matter told Bloomberg News last week. No final decision had been made and EQT could opt to not proceed with a potential deal, they said.
CNX fell 1.6% after the arrangement with Chevron was announced.
EQT already is the largest supplier of U.S. gas, producing 44% more than its nearest competitor, Exxon Mobil Corp., according to figures compiled by the Natural Gas Supp
From what I’m hearing, EQT will still pursue CNX. Chevron assets have relatively low production levels while CNX has much higher production levels and has cash.
Adelphia Pipeline to Begin Construction. (Thanks, MDN) Adelphia Gateway is a plan to convert an old/existing 84-mile oil pipeline stretching from Northampton County, PA through Bucks, Montgomery, and Chester counties, terminating in Delaware County at Marcus Hook, into a natural gas pipeline–flowing Marcellus gas to southeast PA. Earlier this month the project received permission from the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) to begin work on converting part of the existing pipeline.
Turn Down the Thermostat. (Thanks, MDN) This would be funny if it weren’t so darned sad. In Lansing, NY, just outside of Planet Ithaca in Tompkins County, the local utility (NYSEG) wanted to build a short pipeline in 2017 to supply new customers with natural gas, but was blocked by crazies who irrationally hate fossil fuels. The pipeline was never built and since that time businesses and homeowners who wanted to build in the town have gone elsewhere. There’s the unmistakable stench of economic death in the air around Lansing. NYSEG now has an alternative to building the pipeline–turn down the thermostat.
Win Back Wall Street. The US shale industry’s top priority: win back Wall Street. In a White House race defined by the pandemic, the future of the US energy industry made a rare intrusion at the final presidential debate. Democratic challenger Joe Biden’s suggestion that he would “transition away from the oil industry” was seized upon by President Donald Trump, who warned massive job losses would follow. But for the US shale industry, whose pioneering technology and record-breaking production upended the global oil market over the past decade, job cuts are nothing new.
Hedging Cut Backs. US producers cut back on hedging. US E&P companies have so far hedged 41% of their total forecasted 2021 oil output at an average price floor of $42 per barrel (Nymex WTI equivalent), lower than this year’s floor of $56 per barrel, a Rystad Energy analysis shows. Gas has proven more resilient as more than 45% of the expected production is hedged at a Henry Hub base floor price of $2.58 per MMBtu, marginally lower than 2020’s $2.70 per MMBtu. Hedging strategies of US upstream operators have taken center stage as a tool that is helping companies cushion their cash flows amid weak oil prices.
Oil and NatGas Driving Energy Consumption. DOE: Oil and gas production to account for 68 percent of energy consumption over next two decades. Over the next two decades, oil and gas production is projected to account for 68 percent of energy consumption in the U.S. and will play a key role in the energy transition to a low carbon future, according to a new report published by the U.S. Department of Energy. Natural gas is increasingly powering plants to produce electricity, but oil and natural gas are revitalizing the U.S. petrochemical industry, growing the liquefied natural gas industry, and boosting high-tech materials, the report states.
South Texas Drilling Permit Roundup: Local driller tops permit list after months on the sideline. San Antonio-based Lewis Energy Group took the top spot in this week’s drilling permit roundup, with plans to drill nine gas wells in the Eagle Ford Shale. Lewis, which operates in South Texas as Lewis Petro Properties Inc., informed the Railroad Commission of Texas last week of its intent to drill nine new wells in Webb and La Salle counties. No other company submitted more applications for drilling permits last week.
Southwestern PA Unions Support Commonwealth COVID Comeback. (Thanks, MDN) Back in March, just as the COVID-19 pandemic was beginning to enter the public consciousness, some 500 people from labor unions and industry met in Pittsburgh to launch an organization called Pittsburgh Works Together (PWT), dedicated to fighting back against those who want to end southwest PA industries including steel, natural gas, and petrochemicals. The alliance is going strong. Last week MDN editor Jim Willis had the pleasure of interviewing (via phone) Jeff Nobers, Executive Director for both the Builders Guild of Western Pennsylvania and PWT.
Jeff participated in a panel discussion Think About Energy event this past Wednesday. The session on Wednesday focused on the recent announcement of the “Commonwealth’s COVID Comeback” initiative–a package of bills introduced by PA House Republicans aimed at revitalizing the PA economy by incentivizing manufacturing to return to Pennsylvania. Jeff and the PWT organization were on hand for the announcement, in full support of the bills announced.
The session on Wednesday outlined the bills being introduced and explain how they will help PA to regain momentum following the worldwide shutdown from COVID-19. We won’t describe the bills in detail here. The aim of our interview was to learn more about this unique organization, PWT, how it came to be, and how labor unions in the Marcellus/Utica have partnered with and support the shale industry.
Jeff told us that the umbrella organization for PWT is the Builders Guild of Western Pennsylvania, a labor organization covering 16 trades (with nine contractor associations) with a mission to promote the construction trades.
The shale energy industry reached out to the Builders Guild and Jeff to ask for support and PWT was born. Key early supporters of the new organization include Range Resources, CNX Resources, Energy Transfer, and utility companies Duquesne Light Company and Peoples.
PWT is a coalition of labor unions (United Steelworkers, IBEW, Steamfitters, Ironworkers and others), companies, and contractors coming together to protect “legacy” industries like manufacturing, construction, and energy. Jeff said today much of the emphasis (from the media) is on technology companies and tech jobs (think Google and Uber). He calls it an “over-emphasis” on high tech, pointing out that without manufacturing, construction, and energy, high tech would not exist.
Part of the mission of PWT is to push business and political leaders to promote manufacturing, construction, and energy in the Pittsburgh region in a bid to bring jobs back to the region and reduce the region’s high employment brought on by the pandemic.
A couple of issues work against jobs in Pennsylvania. Jeff said the state does not have a good corporate tax structure (it is one of the highest in the country). In addition, extremist environmental groups scare companies away from the state. (Jeff is careful to say that PWT talks to some environmental groups. The organization’s disagreement is with far-left environmental groups.)
PWT “tries to respond to the most blatant accusations from the environmental left,” said Jeff, via op-eds and working with state legislators.
On Oct. 14 House Republican legislators announced the Commonwealth’s COVID Comeback package of bills, including a revision of the state corporate income tax, a new effort to develop workforce apprenticeships and integrate them into two- and four-year college programs (an effort to create “new collar” jobs), a bill to incentivize buying PA products first, getting businesses to expand or build in PA, and more.
Jeff and PWT stood on the podium with Republican legislators at the COVID Comeback launch announcement on Oct. 14, for which he got pushback from Democrats who traditionally identify with labor unions. Jeff’s response is that “you work with those in power, and Republicans control the legislature.” He understands that a few weeks before a national election Democrats don’t want to be seen helping to promote the other party. PWT maintains it is nonpartisan and will work with both parties to advance an agenda of putting more people back to work in the Commonwealth. Jobs are not a partisan issue for PWT.
Jeff commented on the recent visit by Dept. of Energy Secretary Dan Brouillette to Pittsburgh region. A reporter asked Brouillette about employment statistics for the energy industry, pointing out energy represents “only 8%” of nationwide GDP (gross domestic product). True, said Brouillette, but here’s the thing: It is the *first* 8% of GDP, without which you don’t get anything else. Without energy, there is no manufacturing, no construction, no nothing. Energy makes it all possible. Jeff liked Brouillette’s take on the role and importance of energy–in particular fossil fuel energy.
We ended our discussion by talking about the petrochemical industry. Jeff said Shell is recruiting now for permanent positions to operate the cracker plant being built by his members in Beaver County. The Shell cracker represents “millions of man-hours” which are all union jobs. Jeff said there are a fair number of workers who have traveled from outside the area to help build the plant. However, “no city in the country could have built it with all local workers,” he said. Jeff is grateful for the number of local workers Shell employs to build the plant.
Shell, said Jeff, has been “a great corporate neighbor.” They have kept the local community informed every step of the way. They have superb safety protocols. Yet if Shell were to begin all over again today, Jeff is not sure they would have built the cracker in PA given the extremism from the environmental left with their constant lawsuits.
Jeff is hopeful there will be more crackers in the region. One cracker “won’t maximize” the abundant resources we now have in the Marcellus/Utica. If we can just counter the environmental left…
ExxonMobil and Chevron Cut Jobs. Exxon Mobil is slashing 1,900 jobs from its U.S. workforce, and Chevron plans to cut a quarter of the employees at its recently-acquired Noble Energy as the pandemic saps demand for fuel.
Exxon said Thursday the reductions will be both voluntary and involuntary and will largely come from its management offices in Houston. The Irving, Texas oil giant had about 75,000 employees worldwide at the end of 2019.
The oil industry was already struggling before the pandemic struck, with a weakened global economy decreasing demand for energy and producers flooding the market with cheap fuel. Then prices fell well below what producers need to break even. A barrel of the U.S. benchmark crude was selling for about $35 Thursday, and most producers need at least $50 a barrel to make ends meet. As the pandemic gripped the U.S. economy and demand for fuel plummeted, Exxon announced in March that it would cut expenses by 30 per cent.
In a meeting with employees last week, Exxon CEO Darren Woods said the company is exceeding the spending reductions it announced in March, deferring more than $10 billion in capital expenses and cutting 15 per cent of cash operating expenses. The company recently announced it would cut about 1,600 jobs in Europe and it began a voluntary staff reduction program in Australia. It is also evaluating potential job cuts in Canada.
Exxon is not the only oil producer reeling from plummeting demand and prices. Chevron confirmed Thursday it would slash jobs at Noble Energy, which it recently acquired, by 25 per cent. The San Ramon-based company reduced its 2020 capital spending plan by 20 per cent, or about $4 billion, in March.
The energy industry has been shrinking since the pandemic struck. The oil refining and coal production industries lost a combined 10,500 jobs since the start of the year, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.
PA Permits October 22, to October 29, 2020
County Township E&P Companies
- Bradford Wilmot Chesapeake
- Bradford Wilmot Chesapeake
- Butler Connoquenessi PennEnergy
- Potter West Bethlehem JKLM Resources
OH Permits October 22, to October 29, 2020
County Township E&P Companies
- No New Permits
WV Permits October 19, to October 23, 2020
- Marshall Tug Hill
- Marshall Tug Hill
- Marshall Tug Hill