Natural gas prices rise from historic lows - Beckley, Bluefield & Lewisburg News, Weather, Sports

Natural gas prices rise from historic lows

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  • Council hears pro, con testimony on parks drilling in Western Pa.

    Council hears pro, con testimony on parks drilling in Western Pa.

    Wednesday, April 23 2014 1:56 PM EDT2014-04-23 17:56:34 GMT
    Pittsburgh (AP)Pittsburgh (AP)
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    Council members in western Pennsylvania heard testimony for and against a proposal to drill for natural gas under a Pittsburgh-area park. The Allegheny County Council is considering a proposal to allow Range Resources and Huntley Huntley to drill beneath 1,180-acre Deer Lakes Park from well sites on neighboring properties.
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    Wednesday, April 23 2014 8:23 AM EDT2014-04-23 12:23:39 GMT
    Patriot Coal issued warnings that it could lay off employees at its Wells mining complex near Wharton and its Corridor G complex near Danville.
    Patriot Coal issued warnings that it could lay off employees at its Wells mining complex near Wharton and its Corridor G complex near Danville.
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    Tuesday, April 22 2014 6:42 PM EDT2014-04-22 22:42:40 GMT
    The project still needs to obtain state and federal approvals to develop and build the plant, but organizers anticipate construction to begin in 2015 and operations to begin by 2018.
    The project still needs to obtain state and federal approvals to develop and build the plant, but organizers anticipate construction to begin in 2015 and operations to begin by 2018.
PITTSBURGH (AP) -

Wholesale natural gas prices have doubled over the last year, and that's bringing sighs of relief from an unusual variety of interests.

According to federal energy statistics natural gas topped $4 per thousand cubic feet in early April, after falling below $2 a year ago.

Gas drilling companies are obviously happy, and so are leaseholders and states that get revenue based on the market price. But the coal industry and renewable energy advocates are cheering the news, too, since gas no longer has a huge price advantage over those other energy sources.

But a new drilling boom isn't imminent.

The Marcellus Shale Coalition, an industry group, says current prices will have to be sustained for months or years for companies to drill significantly more wells than they are now.

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