Tuesday, March 2, 2010
EQT announced the land purchase today and it brings the energy company's share of the formation to more than 500,000 acres. The land was bought from private operators and landowners and EQT paid $280 million for the property, mostly in company stock. The land spans parts of Cameron, Clearfield, Elk and Jefferson counties. EQT CEO Murry Gerber says the newly acquired land provides enough space for more than 5 thousand wells, yielding more than 4 billion cubic feet of gas each. He says natural gas will be a major player in the energy industry in the future, noting that it burns cleaner than coal, is cheaper than oil and would replace the nation's dependence on foreign energy sources. Gerber says he also anticipates that the industry will be a boon to Pennsylvania's economy, providing half a million jobs both directly and indirectly tied to the industry. He also commented that he is tired of alarms being sounded by environmentalists, saying the EPA has not found an issue with fracking, which breaks up rock by blasting slurry into the shale. He says part of the beauty of natural gas drilling is that once it's over, the landscape remains unmarred.