Oil & Gas

Oil and Gas Industry
2:37 pm
Thu December 18, 2014

New York Governor Praised, Scorned Over Fracking Ban

Credit Northeast Natural Energy

New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo is getting heaped with praise by environmentalists and scorn by business for a state ban on deep hydraulic fracturing for natural gas, even as he insists the decision wasn't his.

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Oil and Gas Industry
8:50 am
Thu December 18, 2014

After Living Next to Drilling Activity, 100 W.Va. Residents Sue Companies

Before/After screen capture of the Mark West Plant, a major mid-stream gas processing plant that's in the middle of construction in Doddridge County.
Credit WV Host Farms

Nuisance and negligence lawsuits have been filed this year throughout West Virginia related to horizontal drilling activities. Noise, air, and water pollution, traffic and debris are among complaints. It’s a new industrial world for many West Virginians living in the growing rural gas fields.  

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Oil and Gas Industry
1:45 pm
Wed December 17, 2014

New York Bans Fracking

Horizontal drilling pad at the Morgantown Industrial Park, where more horizontal drilling is slated for 2015.
Credit Northeast Natural Energy

New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo's administration will move to prohibit fracking in the state, citing unresolved health issues and dubious economic benefits of the widely used gas-drilling technique.

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Oil and Gas Industry
8:45 am
Wed December 17, 2014

More Fracking Slated in Morgantown

Morgantown Industrial Park
Credit Northeast Natural Energy

Amid much controversy, two horizontal gas wells were drilled into the Marcellus shale rock formation in 2011 just barely outside of Morgantown. Now two more wells are slated to be drilled on the same pad in the summer of 2015, but the company, Charleston-based Northeast Natural Energy is teaming up this time with a host of researchers.

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Oil and Gas Industry
1:00 pm
Thu November 20, 2014

Consol Energy Executive Pleads Guilty to Stealing Gas Royalties

Credit Brian Turner

A former Consol Energy executive has pleaded guilty to stealing $440,000 in gas royalties from the company by forging deed transfers so he could funnel the money into a fake company he ran out of a post office box.

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Oil and Gas Industry
1:56 pm
Mon November 3, 2014

DEP: September Drilling Accident Contaminated Water in Doddridge County

This is a water buffalo. Or at least the kind you see in Doddridge County. Gas companies provide them whenever there's any possible water contamination as the result of their drilling activities.
Credit Glynis Board / WVPublic

In September, drilling for shale gas in Doddridge Country went wrong when operators accidentally drilled into one of their own wells that was engaged in production. West Virginia’s Department of Environmental Protection confirmed late last week that the accident contaminated water wells.

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Oil and Gas Industry
10:49 pm
Thu October 23, 2014

“Fracking’s Toxic Loophole”: Report Calls for Repeal of Halliburton’s Loophole

Credit Baker Hughes

A new report has just been published that identifies large amounts of toxic chemicals legally used in the oil and gas industry—such chemical-use in any other industrial application is regulated by the Safe Drinking Water Act. Not so for the gas industry.


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Oil and Gas Industry
3:21 pm
Thu October 16, 2014

‘WV Host Farms’ Offers Researchers Birdseye View of Gas Drilling

Before/After screen capture of the Mark West Plant, a major mid-stream gas processing plant that's in the middle of construction in Doddridge County.
Credit courtesy of WV Host Farms

For a couple of years now an organization that bubbled up in Doddridge County has been teaming with scientists to try to get a better handle on the impacts of horizontal drilling and the ancillary processes that support it. WV Host Farms brings together landowners, researchers, students, and news reporters to take a close look at what is locally referred to as “ground zero” of Marcellus Shale fracking.

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Oil and Gas Industry
9:23 pm
Wed October 1, 2014

4th Annual Oil and Gas Expo Sees More Environmental and Safety Vendors

The 4th annual Oil and Gas expo took place yesterday in Morgantown. Over 2000 attendees and 300 vendors met to discuss trade business.

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Oil & Gas
8:31 pm
Wed October 1, 2014

Well Water Contamination Possible After Drilling Mishap

Credit "HydroFrac2" by Mikenorton - Own work. Licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 via Wikimedia Commons - http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:HydroFrac2.svg#mediaviewer/File:HydroFrac2.svg

Drilling for shale gas went wrong last week when operators accidentally drilled into one of their own wells that was engaged in production. The result is possibly contaminated drinking water from at least 12 homes.

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Oil & Gas
3:53 pm
Wed September 17, 2014

What is the Atlantic Coast Pipeline?

Possible route of the proposed 550-mile Atlantic Coast Pipeline.
Credit Dominion Resources

A series of informational gatherings are underway about a proposed 550-mile gas pipeline called the Atlantic Coast Pipeline. Dominion Resources is sponsoring the events.

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Energy & Environment
5:45 am
Tue September 16, 2014

Lewis County Lavender Farmer Worried About Fracking

Myra Bonhage-Hale owns La Paix Herb Farm
Credit Roxy Todd

At the end of a 2 and-a-half-mile, single lane road, sits La Paix Herb Farm. Owner Myra Bonhage-Hale is a retired social worker in her 70's. She and her son Bill live here, in a brightly painted, purple homestead that dates back to the 1800's. The house, formerly called the May-Kraus home, is on the National Register of Historic Places.

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Energy & Environment
4:32 pm
Sun September 14, 2014

DEP’s Interactive Gas Well Map... Is Getting More Interesting

Screen shot from West Virginia DEP's interactive oil and gas wells map. Horizontal wells are marked red.
Credit Department of Environmental Protection

The latest figures from the Department of Environmental Protection indicate that there are upwards of 400 horizontal well pads in West Virginia. Sounds pretty straight-forward. What does that mean? How many more will there be?

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Oil and Gas Industry
11:45 pm
Thu August 14, 2014

Illegal Fracking Practices Identified in W.Va., Pa.

Credit Baker Hughes

An environmental watchdog non-profit just released a report identifying companies who are using diesel fuel in their horizontal drilling fluids. Apparently, that’s illegal without a special permit.


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Regulations
4:11 pm
Tue July 29, 2014

Speaker to Governor: Spill Law Should Exempt Small Oil, Gas

Credit Ashton Marra / West Virginia Public Broadcasting

West Virginia House Speaker Tim Miley wants Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin to limit regulation on small oil and gas operators in a law responding to a January chemical spill.

In a July 9 letter, Miley said small, non-Marcellus Shale wells are in "survival mode" and should be exempt from new aboveground tank inspections and registrations.

He says inspections could cost $2,000 per well annually.

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Lochghelly Injection Well
12:36 am
Wed June 18, 2014

Environmental Quality Board Hears Complaints Against DEP Revocation Order in Fayette County

“These open pits were discovered by the DEP in 2004,” Rist said. “They were not part of any permit that had been issued. The DEP has done nothing about it. Until about two months ago, after this appeal was filed. Low and behold, all of sudden Danny Webb cleans up those pits.”
Credit Jessica Lilly / West Virginia Public Broadcasting

The West Virginia Environmental Quality Board is reviewing an order issued by the West Virginia Department of Environmental Protection that revokes a waste disposal permit. Attorney Tom Rist is representing groups concerned about Danny Webb Construction's waste disposal operation in Fayette County.


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Environment
11:22 am
Wed June 11, 2014

Was This Fayette County Waste Pit Leaking?

Credit Jessica Lilly / West Virginia Public Broadcasting

Danny Webb Construction began shutting down above ground pits last month in Fayette County that held oil and gas waste. The waste likely came from horizontal drilling operations.

In a more recent development, the DEP says a tank that was holding some of that waste, leaked during the process, but was cleaned up.

Concerned citizens have been expressing concerns with this particular operation for years.

Environmental groups ran some tests last year and while results have turned up inconclusive, it still raised red flags.


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Lochghelly Injection Well
7:45 am
Mon May 19, 2014

Work Underway to Close Fayette Fracking Waste Pit

Credit Jessica Lilly / West Virginia Public Broadcasting

The West Virginia Department of Environmental Protection says materials from a pit holding waste of the oil and gas industry, including fracking waste, is being taken to the Raleigh County landfill. The DEP says work is underway to reclaim above ground waste pits months after the state agency ordered it shut down.

The pits were used to remove sediments from the oil and gas waste before injecting underground.

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Energy & Environment
11:16 am
Mon March 17, 2014

Marshall Co. Sees Jump in Oil, Gas Tax Revenue

Credit David Benbennick / wikimedia Commons

Marshall County's slice of the state oil and gas severance tax is growing.

County Administrator Betsy Frohnapfel tells The Intelligencer and Wheeling News-Register that the county's severance tax revenue increased from $71,161 in fiscal 2011 to $429,810 in fiscal 2013.

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Lochghelly Injection Well
8:08 am
Fri March 14, 2014

W.Va. DEP Orders Fayette Co. Frack Waste Permit Revoked

Above ground waste pits sit close to the underground injection wells in Fayette County.

The West Virginia Department of Environmental Protection has ordered a permit for an underground injection well in Fayette County to be revoked.

The DEP renewed the permit for a class two (UIC), or underground injection control disposal well owned by Danny Webb Construction on February 6.

The permit allows the company to accept fluids from oil and gas exploration, development drilling, and production fluids for another five years. 

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