As an attorney who represents landowners in oil and gas matters, I feel compelled to comment on the troubling forced-pooling provision that state Senate Bill 259, passed by the Legislature, contains.
Section 2.1 allows an operator to develop contiguous leases jointly unless expressly prohibited by a lease. The rub is that it is unlikely that you will find many oil and gas leases with a provision that expressly prohibits pooling.
As to leases currently being offered, it is highly doubtful that any gas company would agree to such a provision. As to leases already executed, it would be difficult to find one with an express provision prohibiting pooling.
Bottom line: This act allows gas companies to forcibly pool and landowners have no recourse!
In addition, this provision essentially allows gas companies to dictate who gets what in royalties.
It is no secret that Marcellus shale drilling has significantly and irrevocably changed the oil and gas game in Pennsylvania. However, the provision on forced pooling in the act significantly tips the balance in favor of gas companies.
Paul R. Yagelski
The writer is co-chairman of Pittsburgh law firm Rothman Gordon's Marcellus, Utica and Other Shales Practice Group.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Trophy shot trumps learning
- Speak up on illegals
- EPA not the problem
- The real big spenders
- Law applies to drillers, too
- Gruber, then & now I
- Ambrosini’s logic lacking