Pennsylvania Superior Court Upholds “Title Washing”

In Woodhouse Hunting Club, Inc. v. Hoyt, an unpublished opinion filed February 2, 2018, the Pennsylvania Superior Court upheld the practice of “title washing” of unseated land in Pennsylvania. Prior to January 1, 1948, title washing occurred through a(…)

Winners Of Shale Gas Innovation Contest Chosen

As reported by The Times-Tribune in Scranton, four winners were chosen in the 3rd Annual Shale Gas Innovation Contest.  The winners were KCF Technologies, Inc., NG Innovations, Inc., OPTIMUM Pumping Technology, and TM Industrial Supply, and each recei(…)

Energy Department Advisory Board Recommends Improvements to FracFocus

The Secretary of Energy Advisory Board (SEAB) recently published its recommendations for improving the effectiveness of FracFocus.  The report entitled, “Task Force Report on FracFocus 2.0,” recommends improving the accuracy and completeness of regist(…)

Pennsylvania Proposed Legislation Encourages Re-Use Of Mine Influenced Water

On January 13th, the Pennsylvania Senate Appropriations Committee voted in favor of a senate bill that encourages oil and gas operators to re-use mine-influenced water for hydraulic fracturing.  Senator Kasunic (D-Fayette/Somerset) re-introduced the b(…)

New York’s Highest Court Sets Briefing Schedule in Local Gas Drilling Ban Cases

The New York Court of Appeals on September 30, 2013 set a schedule for the parties to file briefs in two cases that will likely have a substantial impact on the future of hydraulic fracturing in the state.  In August of this year, the Court of Appeals(…)

Environmental Group Sues New York Department of Health to Obtain Hydraulic Fracturing Review Documents

An environmental advocacy group reportedly filed a lawsuit against the New York Department of Health on September 13, 2013, seeking to force the release of documents related to the agency’s public health review of hydraulic fracturing.  The Seneca Lak(…)

New York DEC Official: Still No Timetable on Hydraulic Fracturing Decision

On September 6, 2013, the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation’s Deputy Commissioner for Administration told a legislative committee there is no timeframe for a decision on whether to lift a state moratorium on hydraulic fracturing.(…)

Proposed BLM Fracking Rules Remain Controversial

The Bureau of Land Management’s revised proposal to regulate hydraulic fracturing on federal lands remains controversial, inviting more than 600,000 comments from 250 public interest groups calling for stricter regulations, as well as strong oppositio(…)

Five-Year Anniversary of New York’s Hydraulic Fracturing Moratorium

New York’s moratorium on hydraulic fracturing has entered its sixth year.  On July 23, 2008, former Governor David Paterson directed the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) to conduct an environmental review of high-volume hy(…)

Western Energy Alliance Releases Economic Analysis of BLM's Revised Fracking Proposal for Federal Lands

Updating previous posts, the Western Energy Alliance (WEA) recently released an economic analysis in response to the Department of the Interior, Bureau of Land Management’s (BLM) latest version of its proposed fracking rules for wells on federal lands(…)

Corbett Urges Delaware River Basin Commission to End Moratorium

Pennsylvania Governor Tom Corbett recently sent a letter to the Delaware River Basin Commission urging the Commission to end a three-year moratorium on hydraulically fractured wells.  Corbett reportedly wrote that “[o]perators interested in developing(…)

U.S. EPA Gives Lead to Wyoming in Pavillion Gas Migration Study

On Thursday, U.S. EPA announced that the State of Wyoming will lead further investigation of drinking water quality in Pavillion, Wyoming.  In 2009, EPA began working with the state and local tribes to investigate water quality in the Pavillion area i(…)

New York County Legislators Target Fracking Ban

Democrats in the Monroe County Legislature are seeking to permanently ban fracking on county-owned land.  If they succeed, Monroe County would join 13 other counties in New York that have enacted similar fracking bans on county land.  However, the Dem(…)

Interior Department Extends Comment Period for Federal Lands Fracking Proposal

The U.S. Department of the Interior has extended the comment period by 60 days for the revised proposed rules for hydraulic fracturing on federal lands.  Interior Secretary Sally Jewell indicated that various interest groups had requested more time to(…)

New York Governor Says Decision on Hydraulic Fracturing Moratorium Will Come Before 2014 Election

New York Governor Andrew Cuomo recently stated that he would make a decision on whether to lift the state moratorium on hydraulic fracturing before the 2014 election.  Cuomo said that the results of a review of potential health effects from hydraulic(…)

Maryland Legislature Anticipates Development of Marcellus Shale

Maryland recently enacted legislation, Senate Bill 854, which amends Title 14 (Oil and Gas) of the Environment Article, Annotated Code of Maryland, and imposes reclamation and financial assurance requirements.  The new legislation adds the requirement(…)

New York Town Extends Natural Gas Drilling Moratorium

On May 20, 2013, the Town of Canandaigua, New York, adopted a local law to extend by nine months a moratorium on all natural gas exploration and extraction activities within the town.  The new local law extends the initial 18-month moratorium passed b(…)

New Version of Fracking Fluid Disclosure Registry to be Launched June 1

Managers of FracFocus, the national database containing operator-disclosed information on substances used in hydraulic fracturing fluids, expect to officially launch an updated version on June 1, 2013 to improve the site’s functionality.  The new vers(…)

Interior Releases Updated Draft Rules for Hydraulic Fracturing on Federal Lands

On May 16, 2013, the U.S. Department of Interior announced the release of its updated draft rules for hydraulic fracturing on federal lands.  The 30-day deadline for submitting comments on the new proposal will run from the date of publication of the(…)

Department of Interior Proposal for Hydraulic Fracturing To Be Released Soon

The federal Bureau of Land Management’s proposal for regulating hydraulic fracturing on federal lands, which was submitted to the White House Office of Management and Budget (OMB) for review in January 2013, is expected to be released soon in the form(…)

"No Timetable" for Fracking Decision in New York

New York State officials said on May 1, 2013 that there is “no timetable on a decision” to lift the state moratorium on hydraulic fracturing.  The Commissioner of the New York Department of Health said that new information obtained during a recent mee(…)

Pennsylvania DEP Concludes Gas Drilling Not to Blame for Private Water Well Contamination in Franklin Forks

The Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) has reportedly concluded that high levels of methane found in three private water wells in Franklin Forks (Susquehanna County) are not attributable to the nearby gas drilling operations of(…)

U.S. EPA Delays Fracking Study Amidst Congressional Concern

Today the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency announced that it is extending by more than six months the deadline for the public to submit scientific data and literature to inform EPA’s study of the potential impacts of hydraulic fracturing on drinki(…)

New York County Passes Fracking Moratorium on County-Owned Lands

On April 10, 2013, the Oneida County Board of Legislature reportedly approved a resolution that prohibits the extraction of shale gas on property owned by the county.  Oneida County is located in central New York to the east of Syracuse.  The resoluti(…)

Industry Group Requests New York Investigation of Anti-Fracking Celebrities

The Independent Oil & Gas Association of New York reportedly filed a formal complaint with New York’s Joint Commission on Public Ethics on March 26, 2013, requesting an investigation into whether the group known as “Artists Against Fracking” is vi(…)

New York Health Commissioner to Make Fracking Recommendation "In Weeks"

The State Journal reported earlier this week that New York Health Commissioner Nirav Shah plans to make a recommendation to Governor Andrew Cuomo “in weeks” on whether the state should approve hydraulic fracturing, despite reports that the Pennsylvani(…)

New York Assembly Votes to Extend Fracking Moratorium to 2015

The New York State Assembly recently passed legislation to extend the moratorium on high-volume hydraulic fracturing until May 2015, but the measure faces an uncertain future in the state Senate.  Supporters of the moratorium, which has been in place(…)

New York Landowners Seeking Plaintiffs for "Takings" Lawsuit Against State

This week the Joint Landowners Coalition of New York, Inc. (JLCNY) announced that they are seeking landowner plaintiffs for a lawsuit against New York State.  JLCNY announced in early February its plan to sue the state.  According to JLCNY, the lawsui(…)

New York Agency Misses Deadline for Proposed Fracking Regulations

The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) missed a Wednesday, February 27th deadline to issue a final version of its proposed regulations for high-volume hydraulic fracturing, or fracking.  DEC Commissioner Joe Martens reported(…)

Youngstown Council Approves Proposed Ordinance Banning Fracking

Youngstown city council approved a citizens group’s charter-amendment proposal to ban fracking in Youngstown and placed the proposal on the May 7 primary election ballot.  Backed by over 3,800 signed petitions, the group, Frack Free Mahoning Valley, a(…)

Free Speech Debate Ensues After New York Town Bans Discussion of Gas Drilling

On February 12, 2013, two environmental groups reportedly filed a lawsuit in federal district court against the Town of Sanford, New York, alleging that the town board unconstitutionally restricted free speech rights by passing a resolution that precl(…)

BLM Sends Revised Fracking Proposal to White House for Review

As we anticipated in a previous post, the U.S. Department of the Interior, Bureau of Land Management (BLM), has reportedly submitted to the White House Office of Management and Budget its revised proposal for regulation of hydraulic fracturing on fede(…)

Bureau of Land Management Revising Fracking Proposal

The U.S. Department of the Interior Bureau of Land Management (BLM) recently announced that it will revise its draft proposal to regulate fracking on federal lands.  According to BLM, approximately 90 percent of wells drilled on federal and Indian lan(…)

PA State Senator to Propose Amendments to Act 13 Fracking Disclosure Requirements

Pennsylvania state Senator Daylin Leach (D-Montgomery County) recently circulated a memorandum to state senators stating that he would re-introduce legislation in the 2013-2014 Regular Session to amend portions of Act 13 of 2012 that relate to disclos(…)

Producers Seek OK to Transport "Frack Water" by Barge

An anticipated decision by the U.S. Coast Guard will determine when oil and gas producers can start transporting “frack water” by barge through West Virginia for treatment. “Frack water” is water containing chemicals used by oil and gas production com(…)

New York Health Department Analysis Concluded Fracking is Safe

The New York Times recently uncovered an eight-page New York Health Department analysis which concluded in early 2012 that fracking could be conducted in a safe manner in New York.  The analysis states, “the Department expects that human chemical expo(…)

U.S. EPA Releases Progress Report on Hydraulic Fracturing Study

On December 21, 2012, EPA released a much-anticipated progress report as part of its major hydraulic fracturing study.  EPA began research in 2011 under its “Plan to Study the Potential Impacts of Hydraulic Fracturing on Drinking Water Resources,” in(…)

EPA Looks to FIFRA for Authority to Regulate Hydraulic Fracturing

Acknowledging the agency’s limited authority to regulate hydraulic fracturing under the principal environmental statutes such as the Safe Drinking Water Act and the Resource Conservation & Recovery Act, the United States Environmental Protection A(…)

WV Legislators Briefed on NRC Seismic Activity Report

On October 9, Michael Hohn, director of the West Virginia Geological and Economic Survey, briefed the West Virginia joint House and Senate Judiciary Committee Subcommittee A with the findings of a report of the National Research Council entitled “Indu(…)

Federal Court rejects PIOGA’s Contempt Motion – But Cautions Forest Service

In July 2011, PIOGA filed a motion in the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Pennsylvania seeking to hold the United States Forest Service in contempt of court for allegedly failing to adhere to the Court’s December 2009 preliminary injun(…)

Williams Partners Announces $2.5 Billion Acquisition to Establish Major Footprint in Liquids-Rich Area of Marcellus Shale

On Tuesday March 20, Williams Partners L.P., a Williams Companies, Inc. affiliate, announced an agreement to acquire Caiman Eastern Midstream LLC, a midstream subsidiary of Caiman Energy, for $2.5 billion. Caiman Eastern’s holdings include existing ph(…)