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Ohio Oil and Gas Association Honors Dan Pottmeyer with 2018 Oilfield Patriot Award

Posted By Lyndsey Kleven, Communications Manager, Tuesday, August 7, 2018

During an August 6 ceremony, the Ohio Oil and Gas Association (OOGA) presented Dan Pottmeyer, Chairman of Zanesville based Producers Service Corp. with the 2018 Oilfield Patriot Award, an annual honor bestowed by the trade association.

Established in 2006, the award recognizes individuals who have made significant contributions to protect, promote and advance the common interests of those engaged in all aspects of Ohio’s crude oil and natural gas industry. Pottmeyer was honored for his long-time advocacy on behalf of the industry, as an authentic entrepreneur who saw the need and took the risk to start Producer Service Corp. at a time when the industry needed a local quality service company that Ohio producers did not have access to. This is in addition to his devout involvement within the Ohio Oil and Gas Association since the late 1980s.

“The Oilfield Patriot Award was made for people like Dan Pottmeyer,” said Jim Aslanides, president of the Ohio Oil and Gas Association. “The legacy that Dan is leaving in Ohio for the oil and gas industry has brought countless benefits and created hundreds of local jobs. Dan was the innovator that led the employee purchase of the company in 1994, which laid the groundwork for becoming a 100% employee owned company today with each and every employee being an individual shareholder of the company.”   

A resident of Zanesville, Pottmeyer left a stable position with Halliburton to take a chance on Producers Service Corp in 1981. Today the company currently operate four large shale fracturing fleets out of its operating districts in Zanesville, Ohio and Hennessey, Oklahoma. Dan is a former football player and graduate of Marietta College with a degree in petroleum engineering. He has been an inspiration to many other members of his family to follow in his footsteps and study petroleum engineering.

Learn more about the Oilfield Patriot Award: http://www.ooga.org/?page=OilfieldPatriot

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OOGA 2018 Summer Meeting Preview

Posted By Lyndsey Kleven, Communications Manager, Tuesday, July 31, 2018

The 2018 OOGA Summer Meeting will be held at the Zanesville Country Club on August 6th – August 7th bringing together the membership and top industry leaders.

A legislative update regarding issues impacting Ohio’s oil and gas industry will be held on Monday morning before the start of the first golf flight.

The Monday golf flight will consist of competitive stroke play at Zanesville County Club. Golf will continue on Tuesday with competitive stroke play at The Virtues Golf Club (formerly Longaberger Golf Club) and a scramble held at Zanesville Country Club. Ken Miller Supply is sponsoring the Clay Shoot again this year at Briar Rabbit Shooting Sports. Tennis, euchre, corn hole and other traditional favorites will take place simultaneously at Zanesville Country Club.

All Summer Meeting attendees are invited to join OOGA for a networking welcome reception; beverage and appetizers will be served Monday evening at Zanesville Country Club at 7:30.

As has been the tradition since 2006, the 2018 Oilfield Patriot Award event will take place on Monday evening, sponsored by Producer Service Corporation. Festivities will include a reception, dinner, award ceremony, and a video presentation honoring the recipient. *Separate registration required to attend this dinner.

General registration for this year’s event is available online. Be sure to login and pre-register online for the 2018 Summer Meeting at www.oogasummermeeting.com. Registration will also be available onsite at the event.

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Ascent Resources Hosts Training for Local First Responders

Posted By Lyndsey Kleven, Communications Manager, Thursday, July 12, 2018
Updated: Thursday, July 19, 2018

Ascent Resources hosted a training exercise to assess integration of emergency response plans for the Senecaville Fire Department, Ohio EPA, Ohio DNR, County EMA, in Guernsey County. The drill was based on a fire with liquids going off the pad.

“We recognize we have a responsibility to keep people safe, and today’s activity allowed us to work with our community partners to ensure our response mechanisms are working. Today, we strengthen our relationship with those partners,” said Joe Steele, Ascent Resources’ EH&S Supervisor.

The purpose of the drill was to test Ascent Resources’ employees for notification of response, incident command, resource management and overall communication. Over 15 Ascent employees were involved and played various roles from engaging with law enforcement, working with the local fire department, updating DNR and EPA.

“The drill was well put together, there was really good communication between all parties, it was important to go through a real-life example of a situation that may happen on a well pad,” said Lt. Dan Webster from the Senecaville Fire Department. “The take away was that we learned there are additional resources available that could have been used if required. The biggest thing was the interaction between all parties before something happens. You don’t want to be meeting someone for the first time at 2 am when it’s raining, and something just happened.”

The verdict after debriefing was while things can always be tightened, everything went according to plan. Those involved kept to the task at hand and executed their role with precision and dedication. Days like today keep operators prepared, the community protected and allows everyone to go home safe at the end of the day.

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Ohio’s Oil and Gas Industry Contributes More Than $343 Million in Direct Invest in Eight Counties

Posted By Lyndsey Kleven, Communications Manager, Tuesday, June 26, 2018

The Ohio Oil and Gas Association (OOGA) and Energy In Depth (EID) released findings in its Utica Shale Local Support Series that show Ohio oil and gas operators have invested more than $343 million in direct investment into counties where drilling and production of oil and natural gas from the state’s shale resources is occurring.  The findings include more than $300 million in road improvements with more than 630 miles of roads improved. In addition, $43.7 million in property tax payments, with a projected more than $200 million to be paid over the next decade.

“The series of reports continue to prove that the oil and gas industry is a partner to the communities that it operates in,” said Matt Hammond, OOGA’s executive vice president. “The industry is making significant contributions to the state and local economies in multiple ways, as can be seen directly by the millions of dollars paid in property taxes and road miles improved.  This revenue flows directly to local schools and creates local economic activity."       

The Utica Shale Local Support Series: Ohio’s Oil & Gas Industry Road Improvement Payments, report takes a closer look at the history of the Road Use Maintenance Agreement (RUMA) and the execution of these agreements within eight counties spanning from 2011 to 2017: Belmont, Carroll, Columbiana, Guernsey, Jefferson, Harrison, Monroe and Noble. The key finding includes more than $300 million total investment, more than 630 road miles improved, 100 percent invested directly into local communities.

The Utica Shale Local Support Series: Ohio Oil and Gas Industry Property Tax Payments, report looks at the industry’s contributions of $43.7 million to six Ohio counties from 2010 to 2015: Belmont, Carroll, Guernsey, Harrison, Monroe and Noble. The report projects that over the next decade, $200-$250 million will be paid to these six counties alone. The percentage of property tax collections to local Ohio schools in these areas is 60-70 percent.

The Utica Shale Local Support Series is an on-going series of studies between OOGA and EID that collectively examine multiple ways in which oil and natural gas production directly benefits local schools, counties, townships, cities, villages and other vital local services and infrastructure. The information obtained for the studies was gathered through public record requests. 

Tags:  ad valorem  Lyndsey Kleven  ohio oil and gas association  oil and gas  RUMA  Utica shale 

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Sales Tax and Orphan Well Legislation Heads to the Governor’s Desk

Posted By Lyndsey Kleven, Communications Manager, Friday, June 8, 2018

The Ohio Oil and Gas Association commends members from the Ohio House of Representatives and the Ohio Senate for passing House Bill 225 and House Bill 430, moving the bills on to await final approval from the Governor.

“On behalf of the members of the OOGA, we thank the leadership of the Ohio House and Senate for bringing these vital bills to the floor for consideration and the bipartisan support from members in both chambers in passing these important pieces of legislation,” said Matt Hammond, executive vice president of the Ohio Oil and Gas Association. “The vision and fortitude of Representative Tim Schaffer and his sponsorship of House Bill 430, and Representative Andy Thompson for being a tireless advocate of House Bill 225, both of which are greatly valued by the membership of the Ohio Oil and Gas Association.”

House Bill 225 requires the Ohio Department of Natural Resources to spend 30% of the Oil and Gas Well Fund on plugging orphan wells and requires annual reporting from the ODNR to the Ohio General Assembly. With support from environmental organizations, those in the oil and gas industry have long advocated for a more robust oil and gas plugging program even as Ohio operates one of the best in the nation. This legislation will clean up legacy issues dating back to the early 1900s and ensures that revenue coming from the severance tax and fees are used to support the oil and gas regulatory program. H.B. 225 passed both the House and Senate Floors unanimously.

House Bill 430 reaffirms the traditional sales tax standing that oil and gas operators have received since 1960. Every business needs clear and consistent system of taxation, this legislation will provide Ohio’s oil and gas industry tax certainty. This bill simply reaffirms what has been conducted for decades and does not expand the scope of exemptions, but rather clarifies it. H.B. 430 passed the House by a vote of 85-12 and the Senate 32-1. It is also important to note that the Ohio Department of Taxation initially testified in opposition to H.B. 430., later withdrawing its opposition the day the Senate passed the bill out of the Senate Ways and Means Committee.

The past few months have been full of twists and turns, uncertainty and political obstacles. Pending approval from Governor Kasich, signing these pieces of legislation into law will benefit Ohio’s oil and gas industry by bolstering the state’s orphan well plugging program and clarifying oil and gas sales tax treatment.

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Recap of the Region 1 & 2 Spring Golf Outing

Posted By Lyndsey Kleven, Communications Manager, Monday, May 14, 2018

The Ohio Oil and Gas Association hosted a successful Region 1 & 2 Spring Golf Outing at the Wooster Country Club on May 11. Groups of foursomes played in a shamble format braving brisk temperatures.

The Association would like to give a special thank you to the event’s sponsors: American Refining Group dinner sponsor, Ergon Oil Purchasing, Inc. beverage cart sponsor, IGS Energy lunch sponsor, Worthington Industries golf cart sponsor. The golf team of Matt Dye, Justin Cauldwell, Jeremy Cauldwell and Guss Zoppi won the tournament with a score of four under par. The closest to the pin on hole 14 was Joe Herman and hole 8 was Mike Wehner. In addition there was a raffle and multiple door prizes donations from member companies.

The Association would like to thank everyone who participated in this event, and the Sound Energy team Tyler Levengood, Bruce Levengood and Carrie Ellenbaugh for helping to put on a great event and overseeing the logistics. 

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Peer-Reviewed Study Finds No Groundwater Contamination from Fracking in Ohio

Posted By Jackie Stewart, Energy In Depth Appalachian Basin, Wednesday, May 9, 2018

The first ever and award winning Utica Shale study to examine the root source of methane (CH4) linked to fracking has finally been published in a scientific journal. The long awaited multi-year University of Cincinnati (UC) groundwater study that found no impacts from fracking was finally published this week in the peer-reviewed journal Environmental Monitoring Assessment – more than two years after researchers first announced its findings. The study was also blessed by the Ohio Environmental Council in 2014 as their recipient for the “Science and Community Award.”

Notably, the study’s topline conclusions echo comments made by the report’s lead researcher and a master thesis that was uncovered by EID two years ago, stating:

“We found no relationship between CH4 concentration or source in groundwater and proximity to active gas well sites.”

“… our data do not indicate any intrusion of high conductivity fracking fluids as the number of fracking wells increased in the region.”

The study further highlights how incredibly important the publication of the findings are, given the fact that it truly is a first-of-its-kind, stating:

“[O]ur study is the first to characterize CH4 sources in groundwater in the Utica Shale drilling region of Ohio, and is one of only a handful of time series studies of CH4 concentration and associated isotopic composition in an oil and gas extraction area.”

While this study is indeed a first for Ohio, this is just one of more than two dozen studies showing that fracking is not a major threat to groundwater, and as EID has previously covered, the report’s now-confirmed topline conclusion is all-the-more noteworthy considering it was partially funded and orchestrated by anti-fracking groups. In fact, the study received over 18 percent of its funding from the anti-fracking Deer Creek Foundation. In other words, it should come as no surprise that the hypothesis was not supported by the facts of the data, and we applaud UC for acknowledging that point as well.

The researchers reveal in the study that:

“We hypothesized that CH4 concentration would increase as the number of shale gas wells in the area increased, with the isotopic composition of CH4 reflecting an increasingly fossil fuel derived natural gas source, and that pH of groundwater would decrease and electrical conductivity would increase due to the presence of acidic, salty hydraulic fracturing fluids in groundwater. We also predicted that groundwater wells located within 1 km of active shale gas wells would have elevated levels of dissolved CH4 with isotopic ratios reflecting a natural gas source, and that groundwater within this ‘active zone’ would have decreased pH and increased electrical conductivity.”

But the data collected from 25 water wells in Carroll, Harrison, Stark, Belmont and Columbiana counties between 2012 and 2015 simply did not support that hypothesis:

Contrary to our hypothesis, we did not see an increase in CH4 concentration or change in isotopic composition of CH4 in groundwater in regularly monitored wells over the study period (Figs. 2 and 3), despite a large increase in the number of producing shale gas wells in our study area (Fig. 1). In fact, we saw a decrease in CH4 concentration in some of our regularly monitored wells, although the number of samples in our time series is relatively small. The low numbers of significant correlations indicate there may be natural variability in concentrations of biogenic CH4 in groundwater in our study area (contrary to our expectation).”

As EID has highlighted numerous times, it was at an anti-fracking Carroll Concerned Citizens meeting more than two years ago that lead researcher and UC professor Amy Townsend-Small announced the study’s findings, stating that,

“I’m really sad to say this but some of our funders, the groups that had given us funding in the past, were a little disappointed in our resultsThey feel that fracking is scary and so they were hoping our data could point to a reason to ban it.” (emphasis added)

But again to the authors of the UC groundwater study’s credit, they correctly reported what the data they collected indicated even though it was contradictory to their hypothesis. In fact the Ohio Environmental Council (OEC) stated,

“This innovative research study is examining the potential effects of hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, on groundwater in Ohio’s Utica shale. Led by UC geologist Amy Townsend Small, this first-of-a-kind project is testing for the presence of methane (the primary component of natural gas) and its origins in groundwater and drinking water wells before, during, and after the onset of fracking. Other studies have focused on water contamination only after fracking is complete. The project involves the gathering and analysis of water samples in eastern Ohio by UC graduate and undergraduate students.”

The study notes that just 115 drilling permits had been issued in Ohio when the study began in January 2012, and that 1,600 permits had been issued by the study’s conclusion in February 2015. Most of the 180 total samples were collected in Carroll County, which has emerged as the most-drilled Ohio county, seeing shale well counts increase from just three in late 2011 to 354 in 2015, according to the study’s master thesis.

The fact that the samples collected on a “voluntary” basis and based on “landowner interest” — translation: from landowners that were involved with Carroll Concerned Citizens or sympathetic to their efforts — further validates the study’s conclusion. And the findings really couldn’t be clearer: there was no evidence of groundwater contamination attributable to natural gas development in the study area. From the study:

“our data indicate that the dominant source of CH4 in groundwater in the Utica Shale region is biogenic, and that neither the CH4 concentration nor its source change with an increasing number of shale gas wells or with changing distance to shale gas wells.”

EID applauds the UC research team for not only (finally) getting this study published, but not deviating from the original conclusions reported more than two years ago. We now call for those who have claimed fracking is “poisoning” Ohio groundwater (we’re looking at you, Dennis Kucinich) to acknowledge scientific evidence and stop fear-mongering that is driven more by politics than the facts.

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Ascent Resources Host Environmental Workshop

Posted By Amanda Finn, Government Relations Manager, Wednesday, May 2, 2018
Updated: Wednesday, May 9, 2018

On May 1st Ascent Resources held an environmental workshop at our Watson Pad located in Guernsey County.  This environmental workshop is part of a several part series Ascent will be conducting this year.  The purpose of these workshops is to better equip our vendors and contractors with the tools they need to practice a safe and environmentally friendly workplace. On Tuesday, this workshop encompassed spill prevention stations where vendors and contractors learned about: spill kits and how to use them, pad drains, waste containers, wetlands, sheen vs. not sheen and finished off the workshop with how to remediate a spill.  During these exercises the vendors and contractors were split into several groups where they learned a different skill set at every station.  Each station lasted 15 minutes followed by a group presentation on how to remediate a spill.  

Ascent Resources considers environmental health and safety to be a top priority of the company and therefor doing workshops like this helps relay that importance on to those who work for us.  In total we had 31 different vendors/contactors participate and 55 people total attended.  Ascent could not have made this event what it was without the help of our three partners: Rettew, Sunpro and Wise Trucking.  Thank you again to everyone who came out, assisted and participated. 

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SHALE INSIGHT – Registration Open

Posted By Lyndsey Kleven, Wednesday, April 18, 2018

Registration for SHALE INSIGHTTM 2018 is now open!

Celebrating its eighth year, the SHALE INSIGHTTM 2018 Conference and Exhibit is returning to the epicenter of the Marcellus and Utica Shale plays October 23-25 at the David L. Lawrence Convention Center in Pittsburgh.  This year’s conference continues the partnership between the Marcellus Shale Coalition (MSC), the Ohio Oil and Gas Association (OOGA) and the West Virginia Oil and Natural Gas Association (WVONGA).

“The SHALE INSIGHTTM 2018 Conference and Exhibit continues to be the nation’s leading industry forum for public-private dialogue on shale development.  Our successful partnership with key regional trade groups in three of the top energy - producing states in the country is proof positive that SHALE INSIGHTTM 2018 will provide industry leading information and one-of-a kind experiences for conference attendees and exhibitors. ” said MSC president David Spigelmyer. 

New for 2018, SHALE INSIGHT™ will integrate all exhibit hall activities with the general session main stage and breakout session presentations to create one dynamic show floor and networking experience!  To generate even greater value for participants, we are also offering best-in-industry conference registration prices.

“This event is a tremendous opportunity to showcase our region and the abundant energy opportunities from our industry.  SHALE INSIGHTTM creates an important forum to exchange ideas and heighten the dialogue around common sense energy policies. We're glad to be part of the continued success and work with our partners at the MSC and WVONGA.” said Matthew Hammond, Executive Vice President, Ohio Oil and Gas Association. 

SHALE INSIGHTTM 2018 guarantees a front row seat for the most important discussion on shale development, featuring some of the most prominent industry and government leaders.  Attendees will network with the most influential industry executives and innovative thought leaders throughout the three days of technical and public affairs insight sessions, major keynote addresses, and dynamic combined conference and exhibit layout featuring all the major shale players. The conference will also feature daily educational sessions that explore various technical and public affairs-related topics.

“This combined effort absolutely poses a unique networking opportunity for attendees.  A number of energy producers as well as suppliers and vendors across Appalachia are active in more than one state,” added WVONGA executive director Anne Blankenship.

Become a sponsor, host an exhibit, or register for the conference today by visiting www.ShaleInsight.com and capitalize on this unique opportunity to gain unprecedented industry access. We look forward to seeing you in Pittsburgh.

Register now to take advantage of the early rates!  

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New IHS Markit Study Proves the Shale Crescent USA Region Is The Place To Be

Posted By Mike Chadsey, Director of Public Relations, Monday, April 2, 2018
Updated: Wednesday, April 11, 2018

It’s one thing to not have home field advantage and it’s another to be the underdog, but to be in the position to be both at the same time, is a real true challenge. I imagine that is how the three volunteers from Shale Crescent USA felt as they entered the capacity ballroom during the World Petrochemical conference in Houston recently.

The challenge that faced Jerry James, Greg Kozera, and Nathan Lord is that history and conventional wisdom and the event location were all working against their messages and effort in general.

This is the second year a team from Shale Crescent USA has made the trip to the conference. The first year, the theme was “we don’t know, what we don’t know.” So they sponsored the opening night reception, to try and make a big splash, they worked the room and made the case, to anyone that would listen, that if you were going to build or expand a petrochemical facility, you should look at the mid-Ohio valley. They came back home with one lead.

For the conference this year, they stepped up their game big time and partnered with IHS Markit and put together a study answering a few key questions for the audience at the conference. The idea was simple, how to best convey the message, with good data, that there is a greater return on investment, lower costs, shorter transportation times and closer markets in the Shale Crescent USA that along the Gulf Coast.

So armed with an over 100 page study, and the knowledge that the Shale Crescent USA is the most profitable place to build a new petrochemical facility, the crew stormed the ballroom this year primed and ready to answer those questions and from diverse group of international attendees. Their research proved to be a difference maker and they had everyone’s attention. This year, they came home with several leads and left the Gulf Coast knowing momentum has a new address. Shale Crescent USA.

Here are a few key points comparing economic opportunities for an ethylene project placed in either the U.S. Gulf Coast or the Shale Crescent:

o   A petrochemical plant located in the Shale Crescent USA would generate a four-times-higher net present value cash flow than a comparable investment in the Gulf Coast.

o   Over a 20 year period, a petrochemical plant located in the Shale Crescent USA has a pre-tax cash flow of $11.5 billion. This is $3.6 billion greater than the Gulf Coast. 

o   Ethane price: 32 percent less in the shale crescent; ethane is extracted from the natural gas stream.

o   Polyethylene delivered cost: 23 percent less in the shale crescent; polyethylene is shipped to customers for use in a variety of products including food packaging and household containers.

For more information and the executive summary of the report please visit ShaleCrescentUSA.com.  

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