Since 2008, foreign companies have entered into 21 joint ventures with U.S. acreage holders and operators, investing more than $26 billion in tight oil and shale gas plays.More at Energy Information Administration.
Consol Energy has reached an agreement that will allow it for drill for natural gas on 9,000 acres of land at the Pittsburgh International Airport. This isn’t the first time airport property has been drilled for natural gas. In 2006 land surrounding the Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport was part of a drilling deal.More at Centre Daily Times.
“Natural gas at the TCO Appalachia index has historically been priced about $0.25 per million British thermal units above Henry Hub. However, the spread between these two points in spot markets reflects rough parity now, and in forward markets TCO is priced less than at the Henry Hub.” Quoted from the Energy Information Administration website.More at Energy Information Administration.
“After decades of hydraulic fracturing-related activity there is little evidence if any that hydraulic fracturing itself has contaminated fresh groundwater. No occurrences are known where hydraulic fracturing fluids have moved upward from the zone of fracturing of a horizontal well into the fresh drinking water.” Quoted from the Association of American State Geologists statement.More at Association of American State Geologists.
“Most earthquakes in the Barnett Shale region of North Texas occur within a few miles of one or more injection wells used to dispose of wastes associated with petroleum production such as hydraulic fracturing fluids, according to new research from The University of Texas at Austin. None of the quakes identified in the two-year study were strong enough to pose a danger to the public.” Quoted from the University of Texas at Austin press release.More at University of Texas at Austin.
The natural gas industry has prepared a movie, “Truthland”, that responds to the HBO movie “Gasland”.More at Truthland@YouTube.
The United States Geological Survey has published: “Water Quality Studied in Areas of Unconventional Oil and Gas Development, Including Areas Where Hydraulic Fracturing Techniques are Used, in the United States.”More at United States Geological Survey.
“The chances of rogue fractures due to shale gas fracking operations extending beyond 0.6 kilometres from the injection source is a fraction of one percent, according to new research led by Durham University. The analysis is based on data from thousands of fracking operations in the USA and natural rock fractures in Europe and Africa.” Quoted from the Durham University press release.More at Durham University.
“Hydraulic fracturing of shale formations to extract natural gas has no direct connection to reports of groundwater contamination [...] many problems ascribed to hydraulic fracturing are related to processes common to all oil and gas drilling operations, such as casing failures or poor cement jobs.” Quoted from the University of Texas at Austin press release.More at University of Texas at Austin.
The EIA Natural Gas Weekly Update has an interesting graph that tracks the month-by-month dry gas production growth from various shale gas fields in the United States. For example, it shows that production from the Haynesville Shale started to increas…More at Energy Information Administration.
A new regulation will require drillers in Texas to report the chemicals in their hydraulic fracturing fluid and the amount of water used to frack each well.More at The Texas Tribune.
Many property owners are very surprised when the royalties that they receive from a natural gas well on their property decline sharply. They are learning about production decline curves.More at Geology.com.
An article in the New York Times reviews some potential rewards and problems that occur when a landowner decides to lease his property for oil and and gas development.
Related: Mineral Rights 
 http://geology.com/articles/mineral-rights.shtmlMore at New York Times.
An article on the Star-Telegram.com website explores declining production from the Barnett Shale of Texas – the rock unit that supported the first important use of horizontal drilling and hydraulic fracturing.More at Star-Telegram.
An article on the BizJournals.com website summarizes the economic impact of natural gas development in the Barnett Shale of Texas.More at BizJournals.com.
Is natural gas part of the shale or is it a fugitive commodity that is not an integral part of any specific rock unit? Will a refined legal definition of natural gas in Pennsylvania overturn thousands of historic leases?More at Business Week.
Devon Energy has drilled over 4,700 wells in the Barnett Shale field since 2001. Today they are in the process of drilling 35 horizontal wells, all at different compass directions, from a single 12-acre pad. This is believed to be the largest number …More at Star-Telegram.com.
The Energy Information Administration has an interesting animated map on their website that shows the geographic spread of drilling activity in the Barnett Shale around Fort Worth, Texas. It also shows the introduction and spread of horizontal drillin…More at Energy Information Administration.
The Baker Institute for Public Policy at Rice University has published a report titled: “Shale Gas and U.S. National Security”. “This study assesses the impact of U.S. domestic shale gas development on energy security and U.S. national security, with emphasis on the geopolitical consequences of rising supplies of U.S. natural gas from shale and the implications for U.S. foreign policy.” Quoted from the report summary.
“U.S. Geological Survey scientists and cooperating partners are examining the potential risk to aquatic resources by contamination from saline waters produced by petroleum development in the Williston Basin of Montana, North Dakota, and South Dakota.” Quoted from the USGS publication release.
A post on the Seeking Alpha blog details how successful Chesapeake Energy has been at rapidly leasing enormous acreages in all of the major natural gas shale plays in the United States. They author calls them a “land acquisition machine”.
The impact of hydraulic fracturing on ground water supplies is a concern in almost every area where the well stimulation method is employed. The Texas Water Development Board has published an informative study: Northern Trinity/Woodbine GAM Assessment of Groundwater Use in the Northern Trinity Aquifer Due To Urban Growth and Barnett Shale Development. Get the report here.
The Energy Information Administration recently reported that production from the Haynesville Shale had surpassed Barnett Shale production. Now, energy statisticians are arguing over the numbers. More at Platts.com.
The Railroad Commission has jurisdiction of natural gas drilling in Texas and the commission disagrees with the United States Environmental Protection Agency on the cause of domestic water well contamination in North Texas. EPA claims that Barnett Shale drilling has caused the problem. More in the Washington Post.
According to an article in the Houston Chronicle, the Haynesville Shale of Louisiana is now producing more natural gas than the Barnett Shale of Texas, running at a rate of about 5.5 billion cubic feet per day.
The Utica Shale has a larger geographic extent than both the Marcellus Shale of the Appalachian Basin and the Barnett Shale of Texas. It is also has a much larger total volume. Will its gas producing potential exceed that of the Marcellus and Barnett. An article on the Seeking Alpha blog explores this question.
An article in the Houston Chronicle titled: “We Can Minimize Negative Side-Effects of Shale Drilling” explores some ways to mitigate some of the problems encountered in developing the Barnett Shale, Eagle Ford Shale and Haynesville Shale in Texas.
Several landowners in Texas are going after Chesapeake Energy for promising to lease their Barnett Shale properties and then backing out of the deal. More on a Christopher Helman blog post at Forbes.com.
Natural gas has been found in two private water wells in Parker County, Texas. The nitrogen content of the gas may determine if Barnett Shale drilling activity by Range Resources is the source or if the source is shallower rock units. More in the Washington Examiner.
Two household water supplies in Parker County, Texas are contaminated with methane. EPA says that the gas came from Range Resources wells drilled into the Barnett Shale. Range Resources says that the gas came from the Strawn Formation which is much shallower. More in a Star-Telegram.com article.
In a competitive rush to lease natural gas properties a pattern of drilling is established. Then pipelines to transport the gas to market must be built to service that pattern with companies still competing instead of cooperating. An editorial in the Fort Worth Star-Telegram calls for a pipeline master plan.
The Texas Railroad Commission’s Rule 37 is the subject of an editorial in the Fort Worth Star-Telegram. The author explains how this rule that regulates the spacing of oil and gas wells seems to be used to as a way to avoid dealing with Barnett Shale holdout landowners.