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Shale Gas

NEWS
May 4, 2011 | By Andrew Maykuth, INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
Chevron Corp., which entered the Pennsylvania shale-gas competition this year with the acquisition of Atlas Energy Inc., on Wednesday substantially beefed up its stake by acquiring new acreage in southwestern Pennsylvania. The San Ramon, Calif., company will acquire leases covering 228,000 acres from closely held Chief Oil & Gas L.L.C. and Tug Hill Inc. The terms weren't disclosed. In February, Chevron paid $3.58 billion for Atlas and its 622,000 Marcellus acres. Atlas was founded by Philadelphia's Cohen family.
NEWS
August 11, 2011 | By Sandy Bauers, Inquirer Staff Writer
A natural gas subcommittee appointed by U.S. Energy Secretary Steven Chu is recommending more public disclosure, more tracking of data, and other actions to reduce the environmental and safety risks of shale gas production in the nation. In a report to be released Thursday, the committee calls for better ways to measure and limit air pollution, and recommends water-quality requirements. It also wants to see the full disclosure of chemicals in fluids used for fracking, the process in which water and additives are injected underground at high pressure to break apart the geologic formation and release the gas. Addressing a contentious issue - whether methane contaminating some wells is related to drilling or is from natural causes - it recommends determining background levels of methane in nearby water wells before drilling.
BUSINESS
May 6, 2013 | By Andrew Maykuth, Inquirer Staff Writer
Since the Marcellus Shale boom began in 2008, there has been much debate and disagreement over the effect natural gas development would have on Pennsylvania's economy. Gov. Corbett, who found himself in the hot seat last week over his comments on the state's lagging employment rate, has promoted Pennsylvania as a rival to Texas as a regional energy hub. In his budget address this year, he talked about the energy sector creating "hundreds of thousands of new jobs. " Most economists credit the Marcellus Shale development with creating jobs and having a profound economic effect in the rural areas where drilling is taking place.
NEWS
July 22, 2011 | By Andrew Maykuth, Inquirer Staff Writer
Since the federal government deregulated natural gas prices in the 1980s, the prices of crude oil and natural gas have moved more or less in tandem. But in the last three years, the prices have become unhinged. One reason is the dramatic increase in natural gas production from unconventional formations such as Pennsylvania's Marcellus Shale, which has driven down natural gas prices while crude oil prices have soared. When the two fossil fuels are compared on the basis of energy equivalency, natural gas is a bargain compared with oil. A dollar spent on natural gas buys more than three times the energy that a dollar spent on crude oil buys.
BUSINESS
April 1, 2013 | By Andrew Maykuth, Inquirer Staff Writer
Pennsylvania State University is seeking to expand its influence on the burgeoning natural gas industry with the creation of what it is calling the "world's premier academic institute" on the fossil fuel. The university announced this month the creation of the Institute for Natural Gas Research, which it says will conduct "independent and rigorous scientific research" on the resource at the center of Pennsylvania's Marcellus Shale natural gas boom. But Penn State, which has come under attack for its close ties to the Marcellus Shale industry, is likely to come under increased scrutiny from activists by doubling down on shale gas. The new institute, dubbed INGaR, is a collaboration of the College of Earth and Mineral Sciences and the College of Engineering.
NEWS
April 10, 2011 | By Andrew Maykuth, Inquirer Staff Writer
Natural gas drillers are accelerating exploration of several Appalachian rock formations that sandwich the Marcellus Shale beneath Pennsylvania, and some experts say the new discoveries may be as prolific as the Marcellus itself. "What we've got is Marcellus times two," said Terry Engelder, the Pennsylvania State University geosciences professor whose Marcellus Shale estimates in 2008 first drew public attention to the region's shale gas potential. Since The Inquirer reported in May that drillers had found recoverable gas in the Utica and Upper Devonian Shales, several operators have become more openly optimistic about a potential natural gas triple play in the region.
NEWS
April 9, 2010 | By Lou D'Amico
The Marcellus Shale, which according to some geologists is the world's second-largest natural-gas field, holds the potential to create hundreds of thousands of new jobs for Pennsylvanians - while reducing our dangerous dependence on foreign energy resources. We've known about the Marcellus Shale for years. But advances - specifically, horizontal drilling techniques coupled with a 60-year-old technology called hydraulic fracturing, in which fluid is forced underground - have finally enabled us to reach its enormous stores of clean-burning fuel.
NEWS
March 30, 2012 | Inquirer Editorial
Even though a congressman boasts that his bill signed into law in January will assure steps are taken to safeguard new shale-gas pipelines snaking across Pennsylvania, safety regulators surveyed nationally say they still need convincing. The state regulators' fears, expressed to federal auditors about the public-safety threat from badly built or shoddily maintained pipelines, stand as a continuing concern for residents living amid Pennsylvania's gas boom. At issue is whether thousands of miles of pipeline stretched across rural areas will be subject to safety checks to safeguard against flaws or lax upkeep, given that federal law now exempts these lines from safety rules.
BUSINESS
June 15, 2012 | By Andrew Maykuth and INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
A new national study says Pennsylvania, where Marcellus Shale drilling is expanding dramatically, is expected to lead in job growth attributed to unconventional natural gas development. An industry-sponsored study by IHS Global Insight found that unconventional gas production, including shale gas development, supported more than one million jobs nationwide in 2010 and was projected to grow to nearly 1.5 million jobs by 2015. Unconventional gas production supported nearly 57,000 jobs in Pennsylvania in 2010, 13,600 of those directly, according to the study, which projected that the industry would support 111,000 jobs in the Keystone State by 2015, including 26,000 directly.
BUSINESS
March 5, 2012 | By Bill Dunkelberg, For The Inquirer
American entrepreneurship and ingenuity have made the United States the wealthiest economy in the world and will continue to do so in the future if it is not smothered by taxes and unproductive regulation. The boom in natural gas is another good example of this. The hydraulic-fracturing technology was invented and developed in Texas, and it is the key to unlocking the estimated 900 trillion cubic feet of shale gas available in the United States (and the estimated 6,000 trillion cubic feet globally)
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