Go west young man...go west!Take Bradford County, Pa., which has more Marcellus Shale wells than anywhere else in the state. Years of explosive growth have earned it a reputation as the natural gas capital of Pennsylvania.
But even as total production continues to rise in the county, state data shows energy companies have drilled fewer and fewer wells over the past six months. In June 2011, 45 new wells, or "spuds," were drilled in Bradford. This June, the county saw only 14.
That drop-off is closely linked to the steep decline in natural gas prices, which fell nearly 50 percent over the same months to $2.46 per million BTUs. Same story in Tioga and Lycoming counties, two Marcellus Shale powerhouses where new spuds have fallen off in recent months.
And then there's Ohio.
The landmen first started sniffing around Columbiana County about a year and a half ago, crowding courthouse parking lots with cars bearing out-of-state plates. In Lisbon, the county seat 35 miles south of Youngstown, officials had to open an office next to the courthouse to accommodate the dozens of deeds researchers cramming into the recorder's office. The drilling rigs soon followed, bringing all the housing and traffic troubles locals love to hate.
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