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Wood Mackenzie: Marcellus could hold another $90 b...

The Marcellus Shale is currently the “largest shale gas play in the world,” and a study from Wood Mackenzie predicts that growth won’t stop any time soon because the formation holds more than $90 billion in remaining value. “Although rig counts have fallen across the Marcellus since early 2012, we can see that improved efficiency and a renewed focus on the play’s core sub-plays have led to ongoing growth,”...

Protest dismissed, but no drilling in Wayne Forest...

The U.S. Department of the Interior has dismissed a protest against oil and gas drilling in the Wayne National Forrest but also has decided against allowing any such drilling. In 2011, five parcels within the Wayne were listed in a Competitive Lease Sale Notice, drawing 34 letters of protest against the inclusion of this land in lease sales for potential drilling. A month later in 2011, the U.S. Forest Service asked the...

Fracking Is Already Straining U.S. Water Supplies

As the level of hydraulic fracturing of oil and gas wells in the United States has intensified in recent years, much of the mounting public concern has centered on fears that underground water supplies could be contaminated with the toxic chemicals used in the well-stimulation technique that cracks rock formations and releases trapped oil and gas. But in some parts of the country, worries are also growing about fracking’s...

Utica Shale activity continuing to move south

YOUNGSTOWN The latest report from the Ohio Department of Natural Resources proves what already had become apparent in the Mahoning Valley: Utica Shale drilling activity has moved to southern Ohio and doesn’t appear to be coming back. The core of the Utica is in a narrow swath in Belmont, Monroe, Noble and Harrison counties, said Gabriele Sorbara, an analyst for Topeka Capital Markets. The issue in the northern part of the...

Fracking fire intensifies push to change Ohio chem...

WOODSFIELD, OHIO — “Environmentalists say the recent fire at a hydraulic fracturing well in southeastern Ohio highlights the flaws in state and federal disclosure laws for chemicals used in ‘fracking.’ The fire at the Monroe County well site on June 28 spread to 20 nearby trucks on the drilling pad, and required additional firefighters from six counties to contain it. Melissa English, development director with Ohio...

IEA chief: Only a decade left in US shale oil boom

A surge in US oil and natural gas production has lifted hopes about North American energy security, but that growth will plateau and will be difficult to replicate elsewhere, says Maria van der Hoeven, chief executive of the International Energy Agency, in an interview with the Monitor. The United States is awash in hydrocarbons, the result of good geology, supportive prices, a favorable regulatory and investment climate,...

Fracking’s methane problem: Study finds new, uncon...

Fracking in Pennsylvania’s natural gas-rich Marcellus shale has a major methane problem, a new study finds. Analyzing the data from more than 75,000 state inspections going back to 2000, a team of four researchers concluded that gas wells are leaking the chemical, a potent greenhouse gas with a long-term effect on global warming greater even than CO2′s, at an alarming rate. The research, published in the journal...

Report: Too few safeguards for drinking water near...

Federal and state governments do not do enough to safeguard drinking water around the nearly 200,000 wells where fracking wastewater is injected deep underground, according to a federal report. The U.S. Government Accountability Office found that existing regulations do not adequately protect against contamination that could occur after earthquakes, which is increasingly a concern at injection wells and fracking sites in Ohio...

States With Fracking See Surge In Earthquake Activ...

FORT WORTH, Texas (AP) — States where hydraulic fracturing is taking place have seen a surge in earthquake activity, raising suspicions that the unconventional drilling method could be to blame, especially the wells where the industry disposes of its wastewater. Fracking generates vast amounts of wastewater, far more than traditional drilling methods. The water is pumped into injection wells, which send the waste thousands...

Halliburton delayed releasing details on fracking ...

A fracking company made federal and state agencies that oversee drinking-water safety wait days before it shared a list of toxic chemicals that spilled from a drilling site into a tributary of the Ohio River. Although the spill following a fire on June 28 at the Statoil North America well pad in Monroe County stretched 5 miles along the creek and killed more than 70,000 fish and wildlife, state officials said they do not...