Saturday, September 22, 2012

Live, work, drill

So there are machinations likely to lead toward some form of natural gas drilling within the City of Pittsburgh proper.  Even with horizontal drilling it may seem odd that anyone would try to develop in such a dense urban area, but it has been part of the big gas play since early on as I myself received little notes from the land man years ago (with a promotion at a Pirates' game no less... btw have updated the tracker fwiw).  As it turned out, I was not alone.   Will more of those notes be coming to city residents in the near future?

I just hope they call 'One Call' before they dig.

Still looking for the first consumer residing in the city with a true arms-length purchase and use of a natural gas auto.  Just one. Whomever is/was/will be that person deserves a news story don't you think? First as in current first assuming of course there was a period without any such person.  I know in the past there were some folks with NatGas vehicles, but we are trying to discern if there is any new trend here at all.


Blogger C. Briem said...

Wiz.. you're getting slow. 10 minutes? It's Saturday morning. Go back to sleep.

Saturday, September 22, 2012 9:44:00 AM  
Blogger Shawn Carter said...

There are those in Pittsburgh who are against any drilling within the City's limits.

I personally believe that we should wait about 20-25 years to extract the natural gas underground until both of the following conditions exist: 1.) Technology evolves to a point where we can extract the resource without damaging the environment or polluting out water supplies; and 2.) The price of natural gas rises to about 5-6 times its' current market price.

Councilman Dowd is correct, and additionally, dealing with reality. The truth is that the Commonwealth will figure out how to legislate this issue in a way that doesn't run afoul of the Constitution and which makes extraction legal in all of its' municipalities.

And just like two years ago, his desire is to regulate, for the safety of the residents, that which localities cannot stop forever.

We must put regulations in place or we will have little protection.

The Mayor was also right. City Council had zero appetite for this reality two years ago, whoch is why they moved to ban it, in a manner that also runs afoul of the law and the Constitution.

Council may still have no appetite for the issue, but what few protections the law and Constitution allows requires us to invoke our land use controls. So make sure to give Councilman Dowd credit for employing what will be proven the most likely effective device for protecting the residents, just don't forget that the Mayor also wanted this land use regulated but ran into a Council dead-set upon a ban, which is patently unconstitutional...

Saturday, September 22, 2012 1:22:00 PM  
Anonymous The Wiz said...

Chris; I am on strike for higher pay.

Someday Pittsburgh will be drilled under. Fort Worth Texas was already drilled. It will be after all the easy and less controversial shales are depleted...IMO. They can drill from any industrial site and go over two miles laterally, possibly reaching the entire city. How many acres does the city and county own? They might get enough royalties to fund the pension system. All the parks, Pitt, the Port Authority, the Stadium Authority, ALCASAN, and more could use the money.

As a corollary, I see the Pittsburgh Airport is advertizing for its gas rights. Whats their total acreage?

Saturday, September 22, 2012 8:28:00 PM  
Blogger C. Briem said...

As a corollary, I see the Pittsburgh Airport is advertizing for its gas rights. Whats their total acreage?

Just think, they might do better when they tried that 4 years ago (when NatGas prices were a lot higher than now):

Someone should look up the population density of Fort Worth vs. the City of Pittsburgh. Anyone?

Sunday, September 23, 2012 7:16:00 AM  
Anonymous The Wiz said...

When did the airport put out the request for bids? Oh yeah, Sept '08 just when they financial crisis hit. Gas companies lost backing and were cancelling offers all over the area, including the company we had been negotiating with. Also, the airport asked for a minimum of 25% royalty which is very high. And I am sure they had a lot of restrictions listed as to not interfere with airport operations.

Hope they get a great offer and start drilling. Not only will they make tens of millions of dollars off of their 9000 acres but maybe they will switch all ground equipment to nat gas, not only saving money but also cleaning the air.

Sunday, September 23, 2012 8:53:00 AM  
Blogger C. Briem said...

I think there was plenty of investment and leasing into shale even in late 2008 and I don't see how one ignores the fact that in 2008 natural gas prices were 2-3 times what they are now. We will see though.

But Wiz, if you ever need a professional reference, I'm your guy! I'll certify nobody is as all shale all the time out on the intertubes as you are.

Sunday, September 23, 2012 3:49:00 PM  
Anonymous The Wiz said...

Beats chatting about the Steelers or the Pirates!

Sunday, September 23, 2012 9:20:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Please Shawn Carter, a little more transparency beyond your name. As Rev. Burgess' chief of staff, you are the mouthpiece for the mayor's most ardent council ally. As we've seen repeatedly in recent months going on years, Dr. Dowd lists toward the mayor on most major issues. Of course, on the other side of the city fracking coin stands the mayor's chief electoral opponent, Bill Peduto, along with the council president (who the mayor recently tried to unseat) and our newest council member. So let's just call it "political" and save the mumbo jumbo and twisted logic for school redistricting other "mischief" imposed by the "majority" on your boss.

Monday, September 24, 2012 9:15:00 AM  
Anonymous MH said...

a little more transparency beyond your name

Heh. Irony.

Monday, September 24, 2012 9:42:00 AM  
Blogger Shawn Carter said...


So putting my name to my comment qualifies as oblique while anonymously besmirching my integrity both in the instant matter and on completely unrelated matters is somehow open and transparent?

I'd name you myself, but I'll give your right to invoke your first amendment right anonymously its due respect despite not agreeing with the tone, tenor or substance of that speech.

It is ironic that some people swear on stacks of bibles of the majesty of the Constitutions but clearly can't stand constitutional rights (when other exercise them.)

Since you invoked Reverend Burgess' possible opinion on the matter, he is opposed to drilling in the City, or at all -- for that matter. He likes clean and safe drinking water.

He is also opposed to drilling in urban areas.

But unless you're aware of a plan by the Democratic Party to regain both chambers of the General Assembly AND the Governor's mansion prior to January 2015, as in, November of THIS year, it is safe to assume the General Assembly will figure out a way to re-legislate this issue in a way that the Courts will deem within the Assembly's dominion.

Having said that, then what shall we do? Pretending that in a state with the nature and the history of staunch property rights like Pennsylvania that we can simply ban something the state declares legal will leave the citizen with very few, perhaps no protections.

Attempting to abate one constitutional infirmity with another constitutional infirmity is hardly a competent solution to a complicated problem.

And no, I'm not worried about Pittsburgh. There is no one on Council who actually WANTS to see the City drilled, and left to the Councilmembers who are actually WORKING to establish, and make sure you read this word, "DEFENSIBLE" land-use controls, they will protect the residents of the City.

But since you obviously are concerned with the issue across this vast, wide Commonwealth, the OTHER municipalities who follow Pittsburgh's "ban it" lead will ultimately be walked off a cliff.

They don't benefit from Pittsburgh's urban density or proximity to waterways on all sides, or Philadelphia's inclusion in the Delaware River Valley Basin, which layers additional environmental concerns and water supply questions.

I remember when Council attempted to pass legislation negating the Constitutional rights of people on spurious grounds relative to this very issue.

Wednesday, September 26, 2012 2:22:00 PM  
Blogger Bram Reichbaum said...

Anon 9:15 - Don't forget, he was also the mayor's Deputy campaign manager. I never will.

Anyway, full name + the availability of Google > Anonymous posts + vague political bile. If you want anybody to believe you (in, whatever your point is) you might want to expose his "mumbo jumbo and twisted logic" rather than merely asserting that it exists.

Shawn - What makes this any more defensible than the ban? A ban by any other name...

Wednesday, September 26, 2012 4:01:00 PM  

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