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Utica Shale News

Fracking credited for lower bills

drill rig

Had it not been for the current fracking boom, Ohioans might have been looking at 65 to 129 percent higher heating bills this January. Columbia Gas of Ohio said this January’s average residential heating bill will be $142.19 to $146.19 for the 1.4 million households it serves, many of them in northwest Ohio. That’s $6 to $10 more than what ...

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State agency fast tracks permits for fracking, raising concerns


NEW MIDDLETOWN, Ohio — The shale-gas company wanted a pollution permit in less than four months. To help it meet that goal, Ohio Environmental Protection Agency officials had to do two things: avoid a public hearing and make sure the feds didn’t get involved. After NiSource officials applied for a permit last February, they told the Ohio EPA that they ...

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Rules would regulate new pits for fracking wastewater

water pit

YOUNGSTOWN — The Ohio Department of Natural Resources is drafting rules that for the first time would regulate the use of temporary in-ground pits to hold wastewater produced during the hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, process. When a well is drilled, some of the water settles underground, but some waste fluid containing salt, dissolved solids, chemicals and small amounts of radioactive ...

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Christian fellowship ministers to oil, gas workers


As about two dozen people finished their buffet lunches in a basement dining room at Tambellini’s restaurant in Bridgeville recently, Ron Handley stood and recounted a life story far more dramatic than the modest series of notecards he was holding would suggest. Mr. Handley recently retired after decades of work in directional drilling for oil, gas, potash and steam. From ...

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EDITORIAL: Forest for the trees


The bog turtles, frosted elfin butterflies, and bobcats of New Jersey’s Pine Barrens, all threatened or endangered species, are in a little less peril now that the Pinelands Commission has stopped a natural-gas pipeline from ripping through their fragile habitat. So are the 17 trillion gallons of clean water in aquifers underneath the forest. The commissioners who stopped the South ...

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ODNR officials preview new oil and gas regs

Book of Heath and Safety

NILES — Two top Ohio Department of Natural Resources officials previewed a set of sweeping new rules aimed at regulating the oil and gas industry as a ramp-up in hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, is set to begin. The rules, divided into a series of packages, will govern a wide range of drilling activity, including well-pad construction, permitting, processing and recycling, ...

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State board considering power project

gas processing

NEW MIDDLETOWN — The state board that issues certificates for major utility projects is reviewing a proposal that would bring power to the Hickory Bend cryogenic gas-processing plant operated by Pennant Midstream, a subsidiary of NiSource Midstream Services LLC and NiSource Inc. On Jan. 10, the Ohio Power Siting Board received a letter of notification from American Systems Inc. and ...

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Akron area starting to feel economic benefits of Ohio’s Utica drilling, study says

Cash from drilling

Summit County is starting to feel the economic benefits of Utica shale development, according to a new report from Cleveland State University. In the 38-page Ohio Utica Shale Gas Monitor, authors Edward W. (Ned) Hill, Kelly L. Kinahan and Allan R. Immonen III, of the Maxine Goodman Levin College of Urban Affairs, say that Akron, Canton, Youngstown and suburban Columbus ...

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New $375 million natural gas processing plant in Mahoning County is operational

Natural gas processing

A new natural-gas processing plant is operating in eastern Ohio. The $375 million Hickory Bend cryogenic processing plants at New Middletown in Mahoning County began operations on Dec. 31, Pennant Midstream announced Monday. “We are excited to announce this milestone,” said Chad Zamarin, chief operating officer of NiSource Midstream Services and president of Pennant Midstream. “As producers bring wells online ...

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State regulators not finished with rules for drillers

yield for more laws

More than 331 shale wells have been drilled in Ohio since a state law was enacted in 2012 that requires the state to create rules to govern how these fracking sites should be built. The Ohio Department of Natural Resources plans to propose draft rules in the coming weeks to set standards for the sites that drilling companies are clearing, ...

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