The chairman of the state Senate Environmental Resources and Energy Committee, Gene Yaw (R- Bradford) is asking state Attorney General Kathleen Kane to investigate allegations of fraud against Pennsylvania’s biggest natural gas driller, Chesapeake Energy.
A Chesapeake Energy subsidiary agrees to nearly $10 million in fines and restoration work to settle federal allegations over unauthorized discharges of fill material at more than two dozen natural gas extraction sites in West Virginia.
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and Department of Justice announced the settlement Thursday.
Oklahoma City-based Chesapeake's subsidiary, Chesapeake Appalachia LLC, will pay a $3.2 million fine and spend $6.7 million on restoration work. It also agreed to implement a plan to follow water protection laws.
The former CEO of SandRidge Energy Inc. and co-founder of Chesapeake Energy Corp. has started a new Oklahoma City energy company.
The Oklahoman reports that Tom Ward's new company, Tapstone Energy LLC, has leased space in an office building downtown. Ward says the company has "a handful of employees" and is looking for more employees and oil and gas properties.
Ward says he is funding the new company himself for now, but that he might consider bringing on other investors.
The newspaper says the lawsuit filed Thursday claims Chesapeake improperly deducted production services and sold natural gas to its affiliates under market price. The lawsuit says that as a result Fort Worth, Arlington and others were underpaid royalties.
Oklahoma finance officials say major tax breaks handed out to the oil and gas industry during the economic downturn in 2010 cost the state $321 million last fiscal year.
Secretary of Finance Secretary Preston Doerflinger released figures Wednesday that show tax rebates and refunds for drilling totaled $173 million in the fiscal year that ended June 30, while state tax credits cost an additional $148 million.
EXCO Resources is spending about $1 billion to acquire assets from Chesapeake Energy in Texas and Louisiana.
The land provides EXCO both with producing fields and potentially lucrative drilling sites in the future.
Chesapeake Energy Corp., based in Oklahoma City, is selling approximately 55,000 net acres in Zavala, Dimmit, La Salle and Frio counties in Texas — part of the Northern Eagle Ford Shale. There are 120 producing wells there.