Energy Law

Directional Drilling Raises Questions About Surface Estates

, The Legal Intelligencer

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Revised projections of the viability of the Marcellus Shale have led experts to estimate that it contains hundreds of trillions of cubic feet of recoverable natural gas. A more recent study conducted by the United States Information Administration in its Annual Energy Outlook 2012 found that even though these early estimates were overstated, 141 trillion cubic feet of gas is available for recovery. This has created an inevitable race in Pennsylvania to acquire the rights to as many potentially viable gas deposits as possible, giving birth to competing interests and unavoidable conflicts.

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