shale

Without a doubt, the biggest factor impacting the U.S. gas market is the development of shale gas in the Marcellus Shale play, located in northern Appalachia and the Alleghenies. The shale gas revolution in the U.S. – specifically in Pennsylvania and West Virginia – is nothing short of a revolution for the entire country.

The changing oil production and consumption landscape in North America has led to new developments in the infrastructure that brings oil to market – the pipelines, gathering systems, storage facilities, rail networks and marine-based transport networks that comprise the industry’s midstream oil infrastructure.

Gov. Andrew Cuomo: Get your butt out of Albany and go see how the rest of your state lives. Or you might not have much of a state left.

One memory that stands out from my 1970s tenure as a reporter in New York’s Southern Tier is that of an economy stuck in reverse. Broome County centers around Binghamton, a city of 47,000 that has lost nearly half its population since the 1950s.

In recent years, the technological advances in recovering hydrocarbons trapped in tight formations, like shale, using unconventional drilling methods (horizontal drilling in conjunction with multi-stage hydraulic fracturing) have made U.S. oil production grow dramatically.

Global consulting company Wood Mackenzie has drawn on the knowledge and expertise of senior analysts in compiling a new report, Horizons: What To Look For In 2015.

In discussing the report, Paul McConnell, principal analyst for Global Trends at Wood Mackenzie, pointed out that oil market concerns will be inescapable in 2015. “With no sign that OPEC is reconsidering its decision to leave production targets unchanged, the impetus falls on non-OPEC producers to limit supply growth and bring the market back into balance,” he said.

Ohio River Valley Pipeline, LLC, an affiliate of the EnLink Midstream companies, EnLink Midstream Partners, LP and EnLink Midstream, LLC (the general partner), held a binding open season for volume commitments for interstate common carrier transportation service on the ORV Condensate Pipeline.

I hope the industry is paying attention to some regionalized developments that could hamper activity, at least in the short term.

Tall Oak Midstream, LLC has early natural gas gathering operations underway on the Tall Oak STACK System. The gathering and processing system will serve producers in Oklahoma’s STACK play. STACK is an acronym for the Sooner Trend, Anadarko Basin and Oklahoma’s Canadian and Kingfisher counties. It is northwest of Oklahoma City and targets the Woodford and Mississippian-age shales.

In November, President Obama and Chinese President Xi Jinping surprised the world by agreeing in principle to targets for carbon dioxide emissions in a symbolic effort to address climate change. This is a pact of historic magnitude that recognizes a need for the world’s two largest emitters – both longstanding antagonists – to reduce future release of greenhouse gas. But aside from a handshake and a promise, what will actually come from this mutual recognition?

A federal approval for construction of a major natural gas pipeline that will ship supplies from the Marcellus to underserved New England and the Northeast markets closed out 2014 with a reminder to the industry of good things to come.

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