In case you missed it, the federal government has been partially shut down for the past couple weeks. In Washington, D.C. tourists are jumping over barricades to visit sites like Theodore Roosevelt Island. TSA screeners are calling in sick because they are not getting paid. For the most part, the oil and gas business is carrying on unaffected, though.
Key parts of the federal energy infrastructure have been funded through fiscal year 2019, including the Energy Information Administration, the Department of Energy, and the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission. The Environmental Protection Agency was able to carry on for a little while past the December 22 beginning of the shutdown, but the agency is now largely out of business. That will slow some permitting, litigation, investigation, and cleanup activities.
Some federal leasing activities have been stalled as well. The Department of Interior is shut down, and it has been one of multiple agencies working towards a leasing sale for Atlantic, Arctic, and Gulf of Mexico waters. That was initially scheduled to happy in mid-January, but it has now been pushed back to an unknown date. Leasing is not the only issue. Ongoing permitting work will continue for the Department of Interior, but no new exploration and development plans will be considered.
Luckily for our region, federal government is not a major hang-up for the Marcellus shale. Most of the production in our area comes from private lands, and state regulators provide the majority of the oversight. The state governments in our area have largely embraced the economic benefits of the shale boom and many private landowners have become wealthy by having a responsible company extract the natural gas below their feet. If your company is looking to Appalachia for exploration and production opportunities, the Pennsylvania-based experts at Cimmaron Land can take care of you. Just give us a call at (412) 212-7517