Energy. Environment. Economy.


A look at how energy extraction is reshaping Pennsylvania’s economy.

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Gas royalties bill back in the spotlight

Royalty advocates were back in Harrisburg Tuesday urging lawmakers to pass legislation to prevent drillers from cheating landowners out of money. “The legislature should clearly define ‘royalty’ to prevent the theft of our resources through creative accounting,” says Jackie Root, who heads the state chapter of the National Association of Royalty Owners. Shortly after the [...]

Environmentalists target port proposals to fight Philadelphia “energy hub”

Emma Lee/WHYY Protesters rally outside the Sheet Metal Workers Hall on Columbus Boulevard, where the Philadelphia Regional Port Authority held a public outreach event to get community input on proposals for the Southport Marine Terminal. Environmental groups fighting efforts to make Philadelphia an “energy hub” for Marcellus Shale gas have found their first target: a [...]

Chester County landfill gas used as alternative to fracking

The search for an alternative to fracking has led a Philadelphia-based renewable energy supplier to create a system that encourages the use of methane from landfills instead on shale gas. The Energy Co-op, which supplies a range of renewable energy products to customers in southeastern Pennsylvania, is now offering cash payments the company calls “Renewable [...]

Chesapeake Energy pulls up stakes in PA and Ohio

Chesapeake Energy, one of the state’s largest gas producers with more than 800 active wells in Bradford and Susquehanna counties, has stopped drilling new wells in both the Marcellus and Utica Shale plays. The Oklahoma based oil and gas producer, which also operates in Texas, Louisiana and Wyoming, announced Wednesday a net loss of $14.8 billion in [...]

Royalty errors for forest drilling: ‘They usually haven’t paid enough’

The gas industry’s downturn means Pennsylvania is getting a lot less royalty money from drilling on public forest land. But the state continues to have problems getting paid properly from the activity that’s still happening. As StateImpact Pennsylvania previously reported, the Department of Conservation and Natural Resources, which manages drilling on public lands, recently hired an in-house [...]

Gas impact fees expected to drop 17 percent this year

The year 2016 is already shaping up to be a bad one for Pennsylvania’s gas industry, and it’s going to hurt state and local governments too. Impact fees paid by drillers are projected to bring in the lowest amount ever — $185.5 million — according to a new analysis by the state’s Independent Fiscal Office. It’s [...]

Drilling downturn hits Marcellus Shale industry hard

The sound of humming drill rigs has been tapering off lately. It’s been happening for a while, but this year, the industry is going through a particularly rough patch. Drillers are laying off workers and cutting spending in the face of low natural gas prices.  

Pipeline opponents welcome court ruling on challenge to eminent domain

A Philadelphia judge ruled that a legal challenge to Sunoco Logistics’ use of eminent domain for construction of its Mariner East 2 pipeline can go ahead despite the company’s call for the court to dismiss the case. Judge Linda Carpenter of the city’s Court of Common Pleas, in a decision published on Wednesday, sided with [...]

Wolf proposes 6.5 percent tax on Marcellus Shale

Governor Wolf wants the state’s natural gas drillers to pay a 6.5 percent tax on Marcellus Shale production, which he estimates will bring in $217.8 million dollars for fiscal year 2016/2017 to the general fund. It’s a bold move for a governor who failed to get anywhere last year with the lower 5 percent extraction [...]

Philadelphia’s green jobs plan long on goals, short on details

Philadelphia City Council president Darrell Clarke [C} stands with Mayor Jim Kenney [L] and several council members to announce a $1 billion plan to invest in energy efficiency projects. Clarke says the plan will create up to 10,000 jobs. Back in January, on Inauguration Day, Philadelphia City Council President Darrell Clarke vowed to announce a [...]

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