Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

Chesapeake Fails to Submit Gas Figures Company Says Technical Issue Made It Miss State Deadline

Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

Chesapeake Fails to Submit Gas Figures Company Says Technical Issue Made It Miss State Deadline

Article excerpt

HARRISBURG -- Several days after the biannual reporting deadline, it's unclear how much shale gas was produced in Pennsylvania during the first six months of 2012 because the state's largest producer did not properly submit its data.

A spokesman for Chesapeake Energy Corp. says the company -- which on the prior report had the largest yield of the 55 operators with producing wells -- had a technical issue in submitting its figures to the state Department of Environmental Protection.

All drillers operating Marcellus Shale wells in Pennsylvania were required by Wednesday to submit figures for how much gas their wells produced between Jan. 1 and June 30.

A spreadsheet detailing those reports was posted on DEP's website late this week, but it did not indicate that a major gas producer was not included.

"The reports speak for themselves, and we share with the public what we have received," DEP spokesman Kevin Sunday wrote in an email.

Production statistics are a factor in how much money is raised from the new shale impact fee. Wells that do not meet a certain production threshold will not be subject to the fee.

The incomplete data posted last week appeared to indicate an increase in gas production over the prior six months, tallying 704 billion cubic feet of gas, up from the 630 billion cubic feet reported from July to December 2011.

The increase was smaller than the 40 percent boost recorded between the first and last six months of 2011.

A Pittsburgh Post-Gazette analysis showed Bradford County in northeast Pennsylvania slipping from first place to second, with a production decrease of 59 billion cubic feet.

That figure likely will change dramatically once Chesapeake's data is included.

During the final six months of 2011, Chesapeake led statewide shale gas production with 112 billion cubic feet, or nearly 18 percent of the state total. …

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