ICYMI: Shale Gas Insight Highlights

Pittsburgh, Pa. – Last week, the Marcellus Shale Coalition hosted SHALE GAS INSIGHT™ in Philadelphia, a conference aimed at fostering a fact-based debate to ensure that shale gas development continues to be done safely and in a way that continues to benefit all Pennsylvanians and Americans. Without question, the event was another great success. Here’s what they’re saying:

LEADERS HIGHLIGHT THE ECONOMIC BENEFITS OF U.S. NATURAL GAS

  • “Golden Age of Gas” Bolstering U.S. Manufacturing: Addressing the conference, XTO Energy President Jack Williams acknowledged that “some Americans continue to demonstrate a high level of concern about the impact of shale development activity on their communities and the environment. … Our industry must take steps to strengthen public confidence.” Still, Williams hailed a “golden age of gas” and said it is spurring a revival of U.S. manufacturing. In Pennsylvania, Shell Oil Co. has proposed a multibillion-dollar petrochemical plant in western Pennsylvania. … In Philadelphia, a Sunoco oil refinery destined for closure will instead remain open and expand its use of shale gas. “Marcellus has reached into some very old corners of our economy and our state and brought them back to life,” Gov. Tom Corbett said. (Associated Press, 9/21/12)
  • Range Resources Executive Chairman John Pinkerton: The United States now has an “incredible” opportunity to be energy self-sufficient, John Pinkerton, executive chairman of Range Resources Corp., told an industry audience last week, urging the development of a diverse energy policy using all of the nation’s resources. “I was around in the ’70s when we had the oil embargo, and to think that we’ve now got the opportunity to be self-reliant is incredible,” Pinkerton said. “The thing that scares me the most is the fact that we don’t take advantage of the situation as a country and seize the opportunity. It’s not about us, it’s about our children, our grandkids and these next generations. If nothing else we owe it to them.” (Natural Gas Intelligence, 9/24/12)
  • MarkWest CEO Frank Semple: “The Facts Are Undeniable”: Frank Semple, CEO of MarkWest Energy Partners, concurred with Williams’ assessment during his keynote speech. “The facts are undeniable,” Semple said, “Marcellus and Utica Shale development — along with many other unconventional resource plays in the United States — are creating hundreds of thousands of good-paying jobs and generating tens of billions of dollars in new government revenue. It’s also producing an energy resource that is clean and affordable, and making our nation more energy secure in the process.” (Shale Daily, 9/21/12)
  • “Corbett: Shale Gas Will Lead Industrial Resurgence”: Gov. Tom Corbett this morning outlined his vision of a “second industrial revolution” centered on Pennsylvania and its burgeoning shale-gas industry. “This generation can complete the journey that Col. Drake began,” the governor told the audience at the Shale Gas Insight conference at the Philadelphia Convention Center, alluding to Col. Edwin Drake’s discovery of oil in northwest Pennsylvania in the 1850s. (Central Pennsylvania Business Journal, 9/20/12)
  • “DCED Chief: Pennsylvania at Center of Energy Revolution”: A top state official said Thursday that Pennsylvania is at the center of an “energy revolution” and attention has now moved to drawing companies related to natural gas drilling to the state. Alan Walker, secretary of the state Department of Community and Economic Development, said Marcellus Shale has become a near-household word, key employment sector and a contributor to the economy. … Mr. Walker was speaking at the Marcellus Shale Coalition’s Shale Gas Insight conference in Philadelphia. “The state is at the center of an energy revolution,” Mr. Walker said. “Lower power prices can help the state ‘re-shore’: products now made overseas can be made here using a domestic fuel.” (Scranton Times-Tribune, 9/21/12)
  • XTO President Jack Williams: U.S. “the Clear Global Leader in Shale Development”: Shale gas development, an activity that scarcely existed 10 years ago, is a U.S. success story that supports more than one million American jobs and generates billions of dollars in government revenues, Jack Williams, president of XTO Energy, a subsidiary of Exxon Mobil Corporation (NYSE:XOM), said today. In a speech at the Shale Gas Insight Conference in Philadelphia, PA, Williams said that as a result of American innovation, the country has emerged as the clear global leader in shale development as the demand for natural gas continues to grow. “Wherever we look, we see energy development creating multiplier effects that ripple through the U.S. economy,” Williams said. (Release, 9/20/12)
  • Gov. Corbett: “Pennsylvania is Getting it Right”: Saying it is “a great time to be a Pennsylvanian,” Gov. Tom Corbett thanked the oil and natural gas industry for bringing thousands of jobs to his state and predicted an even brighter future as he kicked off the Marcellus Shale Coalition’s Shale Gas Insight 2012 Conference last Thursday in Philadelphia. “I’m convinced that we are at the beginning of a new industry revolution, and you are the tip of the spear,” Corbett told conference attendees. “The Marcellus industry’s record has borne out almost every optimistic prediction. We predicted jobs, and the jobs are here…It can bring us jobs and prosperity while protecting the landscape from damage. Pennsylvania is getting it right.” According to Corbett, nearly 240,000 Pennsylvanians are now employed in the natural gas industry or ancillary businesses. He also said nearly 30,000 of his constituents work in the core Marcellus industry, earning on average $30,000 more per year than the typical state resident. (Natural Gas Intelligence, 9/24/12)
  • U.S. Natural Gas Strengthening American Security: MarkWest is already exporting propane separated from the Marcellus gas stream, said Frank Semple, president and CEO of MarkWest Energy Partners. And the company welcomes the opportunity to do more. Semple said exporting U.S. gas abroad could even loosen Russia’s hold on gas markets in Europe. (Pittsburgh Business Times, 9/21/12)
  • Gov. Corbett Underscores the Commonsense Regulations in Place to Protect the Environment, Create Jobs: Supporters of the Marcellus Shale industry on Thursday hailed Pennsylvania’s natural-gas boom for launching a veritable economic revolution but cautioned that much work still needs to be done to convince skeptics that drilling can be conducted safely. At the Shale Gas Insight conference at the Pennsylvania Convention Center, Marcellus Shale drilling was credited with generating $11 billion in value-added economic impact in 2010, supporting 140,000 jobs, and contributing $1 billion in state and local tax revenue.[Gov. Tom] Corbett…credited shale gas with launching “the beginning of a new industrial revolution.” He cited the salvation of two Philadelphia-area oil refineries as examples. “It is beyond belief that there are still people who would trade this progress for a return to the status quo,” he said. He also said the state had done a credible job regulating the industry. (Philadelphia Inquirer, 9/22/12)
  • Global Trade Key to American Job Creation, Says XTO President: At the Shale Gas Insight conference in Philadelphia last week, Jack Williams, president of XTO Energy, used the podium to promote the idea of exporting liquefied natural gas (LNG) by ships. “Just as we do with exports of grain, cars, and other American products, by exporting LNG, we can create economic value that would not have existed otherwise,” Williams told the audience. … Exports would mean more American jobs producing gas. The income would also improve America’s balance of trade. … In an interview last week, Williams said there was plenty of natural gas supply to meet domestic demand and to export. “The question is, do we want those additional jobs?” said Williams, a career employee with Exxon Mobil, a company famous for its longterm vision and executives who don’t make rash statements. (Philadelphia Inquirer, 9/24/12)
  • “U.S. Manufacturing Sector Prospers With Natural Gas Boom”: America’s booming natural gas production has drawn countless manufacturers back to the United States, experts said Thursday at Shale Gas Insight 2012. Low natural gas prices have lingered due to the glut of the commodity, making the country an attractive market for manufacturers once again. … “It can be the dawn of a new industrial revolution, but only if we allow the industry to develop,” said Alan Walker, secretary of the Pennsylvania Department of Community and Economic Development. (The Oklahoman, 9/21/12)
  • MSC’s Steve Forde on NBC Philadelphia 10: “230,000 jobs are supported by this industry, in way or another. This could be jobs associated with drilling for natural gas, or they can be jobs associated with the supply chain.” (9/20/12)

PRESIDENTIAL CAMPAIGNS TOUT AMERICAN NATURAL GAS

  • Kathleen McGinty, Obama Campaign Surrogate: Today Pennsylvania is at the forefront of another energy revolution: the production of vast amounts of natural gas from domestic shale formations. Experts say that we have a near 100-year supply of natural gas from shale, and our state sits atop one of the largest reserves in the country. The president believes we can and should develop this resource safely and responsibly. … Developing our natural-gas resources can mean more jobs and cheaper electricity. Gas production has more than quadrupled in our state, and since 2008 natural-gas jobs have doubled to nearly 30,000. The increased supply of gas has brought prices down and that in turn leads to lower electricity bills. Moreover, with abundant and affordable natural gas, we are attracting companies that use natural gas to produce things like chemicals and fertilizers, and good manufacturing jobs are being created in these new or expanded plants. (Philadelphia Inquirer op-ed, 9/21/12

Moderator Ted Koppel discusses “Natural Gas and the Presidential Campaign” with
the Obama campaign’s Kathleen McGinty and Michael Krancer, representing Mitt Romney’s campaign.

(Michael Bryant/Philadelphia Inquirer Staff Photographer)

  • Mike Krancer, Romney-Ryan 2012 Surrogate: In Pennsylvania, we’re seeing how rational and responsible energy policies can transform America into an energy superpower, create high-paying jobs, generate new revenues, and drive the cost of energy down. Best of all, we’re applying our state’s unique expertise to ensure that our environment is protected whenever and wherever energy development occurs. From experience, we know there is no “choice” that must be made between environmental protection and energy development. In Pennsylvania, we insist upon and adhere to both. And through regulation and strong oversight, we safeguard our sensitive ecological features better than anyone else. The latest example of this commitment came in February, when Gov. Corbett signed the new Oil and Gas Act. The product of cooperation and collaboration between industry, conservation groups, local governments, and a host of other stakeholders, the act is the most comprehensive environmental protection law in a generation. At the same time, it will prevent redundancy, inefficiency, and unfair restrictions. (Philadelphia Inquirer op-ed, 9/21/12)

“HEAVY FOCUS” ON ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION EFFORTS

  • “Shale Insight Conference Looks at Changes in Natural Gas, Oil industry; a Heavy Focus on Environmental Issues”: More than 1,600 oil and natural gas company representatives from throughout the country are meeting in Philadelphia this week to focus on drilling, producing and distributing natural gas nationwide. “It’s an opportunity for the industry to host a conference by the industry for the industry, so the topics are the things that are at the heart of our organization’s work,” said Kathryn Klaber, president of the Marcellus Shale Coalition. “It’s a chance for us to focus on issues that are important in the Appalachian Basin and the Marcellus Shale, but that also have national significance.” Many of the conference sessions focus on environmental issues, including air quality, water quality, spill prevention and remediation and worker safety. “That’s a core of our organization,” Klaber said. … “Our focus is very proactive.” (The Oklahoman, 9/21/12)
  • “Pennsylvania is ‘Reaping Bounty’ in Marcellus Shale”: The state’s gas industry faces tough new environmental rules, but Gov. Tom Corbett said at a Marcellus shale gas industry conference on Thursday that “Pennsylvania is getting it right” as the industry takes off and manufacturing begins to recover. … State lawmakers passed unprecedented safety measures this year to ensure fluid spills don’t escape their well pads, said Beth Powell, a managing director with the Blair County company New Pig. Drillers face about twice as many layers of air pollution regulations compared with 20 years ago, with more rule updates coming next month, said Patrick Flynn of Groundwater & Environmental Services Inc. (Tribune-Review, 9/20/12)


Click HERE to view MSC president Kathryn Klaber discuss SGI 2012 with The Oklahoman.

  • MSC Members “Committed to Doing it Right”: Nearly 2,000 members of the natural gas industry are in Philadelphia for the Shale Gas Insight convention, and it’s bringing opposition — with protesters demanding an end to fracking in Pennsylvania. Convention organizers say economic growth and environmental safety are among the topics being addressed. “We’re committed to doing it right,” says Steve Forde, the vice president of policy and communications for the Marcellus Shale Coalition. “We are committed to protecting our environment, first and foremost. There’s not only a number of regulations but a number of best practices put into place by this industry to ensure we are operating in a sustainable way for the benefit of all Pennsylvanians.” (CBS Philadelphia, 9/20/12)

LEVERAGING NATURAL GAS TO FUEL OUR ECONOMY

  • “At Conference, UGI Points to Increase in Customers”: In ten years, UGI Corp.’s gas utilities have added 50,000 customers, mostly people who have changed their heating system to natural gas. John Walsh, president and chief operating officer of UGI Corp., the natural gas utility serving Northeast Pennsylvania, talked about the residential demand for natural gas at the Marcellus Shale Coalition Shale Gas Insights conference in Philadelphia. “Demand for natural gas service has never been higher,” he said. “We have a direct overlap of our service area and Marcellus Shale and view it as critical to our customers.” (Scranton Times-Tribune, 9/20/12)
  • Chesapeake Energy Corp., Chrysler, Linde Group Tout Benefits of Compressed Natural Gas Vehicles: Alongside Chrysler Group, Chesapeake sponsored presentations about natural gas vehicles at a high-profile gas industry conference in Philadelphia last week. … Selling for less than $3 per million British thermal units, natural gas is considerably cheaper than oil and the cost of gasoline. Drillers in the nation’s shale gas basins are looking for more gas buyers, and companies with large truck and car fleets are seeing greater cost benefits to fueling up with natural gas instead of gasoline. … Major truck makers are offering natural gas models that could replace diesel. Some have “bi-fuel” models that could also run on gasoline. “We’re at the cusp of where the business is going to transform itself,” said Bryan Luftglass, head of business development for Linde Group. (E&E News, 9/24/12)
  • “Natural Gas Industry Experts Push for Wider Use of Vehicles that Run on Compressed Natural Gas”: Motorists in Bradford County soon will have access to a natural gas filling station charging about $1.49 per gallon equivalent. It’s one of several filling stations Chesapeake Energy plans to open in the Endless Mountains region to fuel its own natural gas-powered vehicles while opening the station to the public, said Norman Herrera, director of market development for Chesapeake Energy. … Chrysler produces a Dodge Ram that runs on CNG. Honda produces a CNG-fueled Civic. Other automakers make conversion kits available to those who wish to turn a gasoline engine to natural gas. [Todd Hartje, head of market requirements for fleet operations for Chrysler Corp.], said Chrysler is working on CNG service vans and large sedans. “This will work, and we think we are there,” he said. (Scranton Times-Tribune, 9/22/12)