Fracking Drillers Collected Huge Revenues from Marcellus Gas Wells in 2011
by Duane Nichols
PA gas drilling yields $3.5 billion in 2011 revenues, $1.2 billion in WV
Marcellus Shale gas wells in Pennsylvania generated about $3.5 billion in gross revenues for drillers in 2011, along with about $1.2 billion in West Virginia, according to an analysis by The Associated Press. However, wholesale price for natural gas has dipped below $2 per MCF over the last year.
This year less drilling and less revenue may result. The developing strategy is to drill for “wet gas” then separate out the valuable ethane, propane and other hydrocarbon by-products. In 2011 the Marcellus formation produced just over 1 trillion cubic feet of gas in Pennsylvania, and about 350 billion cubic feet in West Virginia. Ohio has almost no Marcellus production, but activities to drill into the Utica formation are underway.
Move to wet gas paying off for drillers
As reported by the Wheeling Intelligencer, natural gas drillers are earning substantially more revenue—up to three times more—for every “wet gas” well they complete compared to every dry well, according to Chesapeake Energy. Company information shows that for a typical dry gas well, the company makes an average of $13,000 in revenue per day.
However, for a “wet gas” well, the daily revenue more than doubles to $27,800 per day. Then, for a “wetter” gas well, such as those found in Marshall County, WV, they earns an average of $38,800 in revenue every day of production. Chesapeake spokeswoman Stacey Brodak said these amounts are for gas streams that keep the ethane with the methane, as opposed to separating and sending the ethane to cracker facility for even higher profits.
The process of keeping the ethane in the gas stream is known as “ethane rejection.” “Ethane rejection may occur when there is not sufficient market demand for purity ethane. Consequently, the ethane is left in the gas stream until increased demand is realized,” Brodak said. Along with the increased focus on natural gas liquids from wet gas, Chesapeake and its partners plan to open a $900 million natural gas processing complex with facilities in Harrison and Columbiana counties by the middle of next year. Chesapeake will partner with M3 Midstream and EV Energy Partners to build natural gas gathering and compression facilities that Chesapeake will operate. M3 will also operate some processing, natural gas liquids fractionation, loading and terminal facilities.
The processing facility to be located in Columbiana County will have an initial capacity of 600 million cubic feet per day. Natural gas liquids will be delivered to a central hub complex in Harrison County that will feature an initial storage capacity of 870,000 barrels. The Harrison County facility will also have fractionation capacity of 90,000 barrels per day, as well as a substantial rail-loading facility, according to Chesapeake. MarkWest Energy is building a $500 million natural gas processing complex for Harrison and Monroe counties, as well.
The map shown above is from the Penn State Marcellus Center for Outreach and Research (MCOR), where other information and other maps of interest can be found.
California Governor Gavin Newsom signed an executive order Wednesday that would ban the sale of new cars in California that run only on gasoline by the year 2035. The bid to reduce emissions and combat the climate crisis would make California the first state to ban the sale of new cars with internal combustion engines, according to POLITICO.
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By Harry Kretchmer
By 2030, almost a third of all the energy consumed in the European Union must come from renewable sources, according to binding targets agreed in 2018. Sweden is helping lead the way.
Sweden is a world leader in renewable energy consumption. Swedish Institute/World Bank
Naturally Warm<p>54% of Sweden's power comes from renewables, and is helped by its geography. With plenty of moving water and 63% forest cover, it's no surprise the <a href="https://sweden.se/nature/energy-use-in-sweden/#" target="_blank">two largest renewable power sources</a> are hydropower and biomass. And that biomass is helping support a local energy boom.</p><p>Heating is a key use of energy in a cold country like Sweden. In recent decades, as fuel oil taxes have increased, the country's power companies have turned to renewables, like biomass, to fuel local 'district heating' plants.</p><p>In Sweden these trace their <a href="https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0360544217304140#fig3" target="_blank">origins back to 1948</a>, when a power station's excess heat was first used to heat nearby buildings: steam is <a href="https://www.sciencedirect.com/topics/engineering/district-heating-system" target="_blank">forced along a network of pipes</a> to wherever it's needed. Today, there are around 500 district heating systems across the country, from major cities to small villages, providing heat to homes and businesses.</p><p>District heating used to be fueled mainly from the <a href="https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0360544217304140" target="_blank">by-products of power plants</a>, waste-to-energy plants and industrial processes. These days, however, Sweden is bringing more renewable sources into the mix. And as a result of competition, this localized form of power is now the country's<a href="https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0360544217304140#fig3" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer"> home-heating market leader.</a></p>
Sweden is using smart grids to turn buildings into energy producers. Huang et al/Elsevier
Energy ‘Prosumers’<p>But Sweden doesn't stop at village-level heating solutions. Its new breed of energy-generation takes hyper-local to the next level.</p><p>One example is in the city of Ludivika where 1970s flats <a href="https://www.buildup.eu/sites/default/files/content/transforming-a-residential-building-cluster-into-electricity-prosumers-in-sweden.pdf" target="_blank">have recently been retrofitted with the latest smart energy technology</a>.</p><p>48 family apartments spread across 3 buildings have been given photovoltaic solar panels, thermal energy storage and heat pump systems. A micro energy grid connects it all, and helps charge electric cars overnight.</p><p>The result is a cluster of 'prosumer' buildings, producing rather than consuming enough power for 77% of residents' needs. With <a href="http://www.diva-portal.org/smash/get/diva2:1232060/FULLTEXT01.pdf" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">high levels of smart meter usage</a>, it's a model that looks set to spread across Sweden.</p>
<div id="d7bf9" class="rm-shortcode" data-rm-shortcode-id="8757b138d5570bec9d6aad18074a429a"><blockquote class="twitter-tweet twitter-custom-tweet" data-twitter-tweet-id="1273556364263071744" data-partner="rebelmouse"><div style="margin:1em 0">Read more about Western Harbour and book a visit: https://t.co/ujSmVs9rNK 🏡🌳🌊 https://t.co/C5PuPziqIM</div> — Smart City Sweden (@Smart City Sweden)<a href="https://twitter.com/SmartCitySweden/statuses/1273556364263071744">1592474473.0</a></blockquote></div>
Scaling Up<p>A recent development by E.ON in Hyllie, a district on the outskirts of Malmö, southern Sweden, <a href="https://www.eonenergy.com/blog/2019/February/sweden-smart-city" target="_blank">has scaled up the smart grid principle</a>. Energy generation comes from local wind, solar, biomass and waste sources.</p><p>Smart grids then balance the power, react to the weather, deploying extra power when it's colder or putting excess into battery storage when it's warm. The system is not only more efficient, but bills have fallen.</p><p>Smart energy developments like those in Hyllie, Ludivika, and renewable-driven district heating, offer a radical alternative to the centralized energy systems many countries rely on today.</p><p>The EU's leaders have a challenge: how to generate 32% of energy from renewables by 2030. Sweden offers a vision of how technology and local solutions can turn a goal into a reality.</p>
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