Welcome back to The Link-Up, your weekly rundown of our favorite stories from the past seven days in the oil and gas industry!
The headline might be stating the obvious, but it really does get to the heart of why we talk about a lot of the things we talk about in these posts. While some states like Ohio, Pennsylvania, and West Virginia have engaged in some collaborative efforts (see: Shale Crescent USA), the bottom line is that they're still competitive with each other for those sweet, sweet taxes and fees that improve various aspects of their lives. But get too greedy with those taxes and fees, or with regulations, and people will find somewhere else to drill. It really is a fascinating balancing act.
The Denver Post
Here's a little bit of a 2019 spin on a story we've talked about here, the one where the industry scored a victory in the Colorado Supreme Court when it was held that the Colorado Oil & Gas Conservation Commission did not have to consider health and environmental concerns above economic ones during the permitting process. But... hold up, the appellate court judge who wrote the dissenting opinion (remember, the plaintiffs won that round) is kind of a bad person - she was forced to resign after discussing her decisions in an e-mail to her ex-lover and used some questionable ethnic language in describing a couple people, one a fellow judge. Ouch.
Anyway, because her now-tainted dissenting opinion was heavily relied-on in the Supreme Court arguments, Martinez et al. attempted to get that decision thrown out. Good news though: the Supreme Court said "nah, we're not re-visiting that one."
"Water is the new oil," says an oilfield consultant. Makes sense, since you need the water to get the oil, and lots of it. But anyway, that man in the photo above, Toby Darden, is now very rich because of that reality and because of the water on his property. Glad he can afford a new shirt though.
Colorado Public Radio
WYD, Colorado? It's always something with you people. Now, forced pooling, the accepted-by-most practice of requiring only a certain percentage of mineral rights holders to sell in before any holdouts are forced to come along for the ride, is under attack. You can ask West Virginia what it's like without forced pooling, as they only recently passed legislation allowing it. Not something I know firsthand, but having one guy hold up your entire operation even though 100 others are on board probably isn't fun.
One company that is probably grateful for forced pooling? EQT, which is famous for drilling really, really long laterals. However, the company is shifting to consider efficiency goals over pure volume, and will start cutting off laterals at around 15,000 feet. Which still seems pretty long to me, I mean that's like three miles. They have identified the Marcellus Shale as the region providing the best return for the cost, so that's good.
Uh yeah, I've been saying that for a while. Thanks largely to information I've gathered from Jude Clemente's articles to be fair, but still. Here, Clemente specifically takes aim at New York and New England, which both use a ton of gas but fight every effort to expand pipeline capacity.
Trumpy Bear is on it, I guess.
The current/old record is 144.6 billion cubic feet, set on New Year's Day in 2018. I don't remember a polar vortex or anything along those lines happening then, so that's a pretty impressive number under "normal" circumstances. But in the heart of the freezing over of the northeastern and midwestern U.S. on Wednesday, early projections had usage around 145.2 billion cubic feet.
Oil & Gas 360
We continue to be completely awful people.
See you next week!