Natural gas vehicles making inroads; sales rising

Ford Motor Co. said Tuesday it sold a record 11,600 natural gas vehicles in its 2012 model year, more than triple the number it sold in 2010. It's the latest sign that natural gas is making inroads as a transportation fuel, particularly for truck fleets, buses and taxis. The consumer market is tougher to crack, but sales are gaining there as well.



Washington Rotating Control Heads Inc. taps into the Marcellus Shale market

Joyce Mayernik and her sister Denise Johnston are the first to admit they felt overwhelmed when they took over Washington Rotating Control Heads Inc. two years ago.



Battelle venture will take water from coal mines for fracking

Battelle is part of a new joint venture aimed at easing a potential fracking water shortage for oil and natural gas companies developing the Utica and Marcellus shale plays in Ohio and Pennsylvania.



Gas drilling industry helps Pa. become one of top states in number of new or expanded corporate facilities

The booming gas drilling industry may have helped to seal Pennsylvania's position as one of the top states in the nation for the number of new or expanded corporate facilities. The state ranks No. 1 in the Northeast and third in the nation, with 430 new facilities in 2012, according to Site Selection magazine, which specializes in corporate real estate. Pittsburgh was sixth among metro markets of at least 1 million people, with 126 new or expanded corporate facilities.



Revolving Door: Report shows link between governor's office and gas industry

A recent report released by the Public Accountability Initiative (PAI), says several government officers and environmental regulators in the state have left their public jobs for careers in the oil and gas industry or vice versa -- left their industry jobs for government posts. The report, released in February, details the ties between the industry and Pennsylvania's governors, state officials and environmental regulatory bodies.



Shale Gas Production Exceeds 2 Trillion Cubic Feet During 2012

The Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) recently released the unconventional production data for the second half of 2012 and once again Pennsylvania witnessed a record level of natural gas production. Production from 3,551 unconventional wells totaled 1.15 trillion cubic feet (TCF) from July through December 2012. There were 176 wells that produced over 1 BCF in the 6 month period with the Heitzenroder well the top producer at 4.5 BCF. Adding production from the first half of 2012 equaling 895 BCF, it helped push natural gas production from unconventional sources to 2.04 TCF.



Breakthrough Institute Finds Gas Primarily Caused USA's Sharp Carbon Drop

Defeat is an orphan, but victory has many parents. Uncle Sam's remarkable success in cutting carbon emissions since they peaked in 2007 is an environmental victory, but it has triggered a debate about the contribution of the gas boom to the fact of the big US carbon drop.



For Hollywood, fracking hasn't reached the promised land

A revolutionary new horizontal drilling method taps into lucrative underground energy resources, fueling the most famous quote and satirized scene of one of this century's most critically hailed movies. C'mon, you remember Daniel Day-Lewis bellowing, "I ... drink ... your ... milkshake!" in 2007's Oscar-nominated "There Will be Blood." Too bad he was talking about 1920s oil and not 2013 natural gas.



The Business Boom?

When it comes to the Marcellus shale play and the local economy, experts have two things to say: Extracting the natural gas from the massive shale is just the beginning, and this development is going to be around for decades to come. Nearly 500 companies in the 10-county area of southwestern Pennsylvania are involved in the natural gas industry, according to research compiled by the Pittsburgh Regional Alliance.



Shale lease helps preserve historic Black farm

When she was young and would vacation at her family farm in late summers before heading back to school, Denise Dennis didn't think it was a big deal. She was just "going up country" to visit her grandparents. But, as she later learned, it was, and is, a big deal. Initially purchased by Prince Perkins in 1793, and is the oldest surviving farm founded by free Blacks in the state. It's located approximately 20 miles north of Scranton, Pa. On Feb. 26 Dennis was the guest of honor at the African American History Museum event sponsored by members of the Marcellus Shale Coalition.