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The oil and gas industry rebounded during the past year through efficiency measures, consolidation and a resurgence of business opportunities related to shale gas development and its impact on upstream, midstream and downstream companies, according to a just-released study by Pittsburgh-based law firm Babst Calland.
As a result, many new opportunities and approaches to regulation, asset optimization and infrastructure are underway, The 2017 Babst Calland Report – Upstream, Midstream and Downstream: Resurgence of the Appalachian Shale Industry; Legal and Regulatory Perspective for Producers and Midstream Operators, found.
“This report provides perspective on the challenges and opportunities of a resurging shale gas industry in the Appalachian Basin, including: the divergence of federal and state policy that creates more uncertainty for industry; increased special interest opposition groups on new issues and forums despite their lack of success in the courts; and the expansion from drilling to midstream development and now to downstream manufacturing that demonstrates the emergence of a more diverse energy economy,” according to Joseph K. Reinhart, co-chair of Babst Calland’s Energy and Natural Resources Group.
Shale gas continues to provide Pennsylvania, Ohio and West Virginia with “significant economic opportunities through employment and related revenue from the development of well sites, building of pipelines necessary to transport gas to market, and new downstream opportunities being created for manufacturing industries due to the volume of natural gas and natural gas liquids produced in the Appalachian Basin.”
Shell’s progress from a year ago to construct an ethane cracker plant in Beaver County, Pa., represents just one example of the expanding downstream market for natural gas, according to the law firm, Kallanish Energy finds.
Many other manufacturing firms are expected to enter the region and establish businesses drawn by the energy and raw materials associated with natural gas and natural gas liquids from the Marcellus and Utica Shale plays.
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