Mississippi, Louisiana getting in on the shale boom action

posted at 1:21 pm on February 28, 2014 by Erika Johnsen

Texas, California, Oklahoma, and especially North Dakota have been grabbing headlines over the past couple of years as energy companies have been reaping the rewards of the technological innovation that has made it commercially viable to tap into the Eagle Ford and Bakken and other such gigantic shale formations, and they’re not even close to finished with expanding the boundaries of the shale boom yet.

Oil and gas companies have been steadily buying up acres of mineral rights in potential shale hot spots around the country, and it looks like the Tuscaloosa Marine shale is next on the list. It’s estimated to hold a full-on 7 billion barrels of recoverable oil, and as a couple of companies have been threshing out the situation, local economies are already starting to benefit. The Associated Press has a great rundown of the scenario:

Residents living above an oil-rich shale formation that stretches across southwest Mississippi and Louisiana have been waiting on a boom for years. A steady trickle of drilling is already boosting the rural region’s economy, and spending by two oil companies could make 2014 the year that many other locals finally cash in on the oil far beneath their feet. …

Gillsburg and surrounding Amite County lie above a prime section of the Tuscaloosa Marine Shale, a geologic formation that stretches in boomerang shape across Louisiana’s midsection and into southern Mississippi. …

For the region’s economy, though, the drilling has already provided a much-needed infusion, even if it’s not an all-out boom yet.

Heavily wooded with only a handful of small towns, Amite County has relied on forestry in recent decades. But Georgia-Pacific LLC closed a plywood mill in Gloster in 2009. Combined with other business closures, Chancery Clerk Ronnie Taylor said Amite County lost as many as 850 jobs. The county’s 4,600 workers had an 8.7 percent unemployment rate in December, higher than Mississippi’s average. Here and there, pastures are reminders of the county’s fading dairy industry.

Bernell McGehee, an accountant in Liberty, said his family leased some forestland south of town to Encana for a $300-an-acre one-time payment. He stands to earn more in royalties if the land produces oil.

“Any debts we’ve had, we’ve pretty much been able to get rid of,” he said.

Read: The recession pretty much economically ravaged the area, and the energy sector is what’s helping to finally bring it back.

The region is still something of a financially risky play, with drillers trying to figure out the precise technological recipe for taking the best advantage of the Tuscaloosa Marine formation’s particular geological makeup, but the amount of oil and gas down there could very well be equal to amount in the Bakken formation that’s pulled North Dakota out of our otherwise meager economic “recovery.”

I would point out again that so much of this boom is happening on private and state lands, and not because of the Obama administration’s economic or regulatory policies, but in spite of them — and indeed, that the administration is actively preventing energy companies from bringing similarly robust economic recovery to areas that the federal government controls.


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But, environment!

Akzed on February 28, 2014 at 1:21 PM

Don’t let Landrieu, the witch, take the credit.

Schadenfreude on February 28, 2014 at 1:23 PM

Here in Mississippi, Governor Bryant is pro-energy and pro-business. We will squeeze every last drop of this.

greggriffith on February 28, 2014 at 1:26 PM

Wahoo! Me n the wife can get us a new double-wide.

davidk on February 28, 2014 at 1:27 PM

God Bless Mississippi & Louisiana.

Good Luck and welcome to the Boom!

workingclass artist on February 28, 2014 at 1:31 PM

King Obama’s EPA to make all of this illegal by June.

jukin3 on February 28, 2014 at 1:43 PM

Wahoo! Me n the wife can get us a new double-wide.

davidk on February 28, 2014 at 1:27 PM

So, you won’t be joining us fer the celebration. Right?

:)

Tsar of Earth on February 28, 2014 at 1:52 PM

Here is a good way to aid and abet the U.S. on the energy front.
Take on the msm/commie Democrat Climate Change / CO2 lie / Hockey Stick fraud via a cloud funded info on the Climate Change fraud.
It will be called Climate Change , The Facts 2014

http://thefacts2014.ipa.org.au/

The phy. address:
The Institute of Public Affairs
Level 2, 410 Collin Street
Melbourne, Vic 3000

or on line at the link above

APACHEWHOKNOWS on February 28, 2014 at 1:57 PM

And in New York……….(birds chirp) we study,we study….(birds chirp).

Gov Cuomo: the great ditherer

notwantedinN.Y.

jmtham156 on February 28, 2014 at 2:13 PM

Why is their timber/agriculture fading? I would have thought that timber alone, would have been huge in that area.

JAGonzo on February 28, 2014 at 2:19 PM

Why is their timber/agriculture fading? I would have thought that timber alone, would have been huge in that area.

JAGonzo on February 28, 2014 at 2:19 PM

My wild guess would be one four-letter word:
EPA.

pambi on February 28, 2014 at 2:25 PM

…somehow…JugEars will find a way to stop them!

KOOLAID2 on February 28, 2014 at 2:44 PM

It took several years, but Goodrich finally came up with a frac formula for the crumbly shale formations.

Kermit on February 28, 2014 at 2:46 PM

Why is their timber/agriculture fading? I would have thought that timber alone, would have been huge in that area.

JAGonzo on February 28, 2014 at 2:19 PM

My wild guess would be one four-letter word:
EPA.

pambi on February 28, 2014 at 2:25 PM

Most of the papermills in the SE shutdown over 10 years ago, due lower demand mostly from China. There had been a lot of expansions in the early 80′s as Chinese paper imports zoomed.

Kermit on February 28, 2014 at 2:48 PM

People have no idea how big this shale thing is going to get. I’m glad Erika is following it.

WhatSlushfund on February 28, 2014 at 2:53 PM

People have no idea how big this shale thing is going to get. I’m glad Erika is following it.

WhatSlushfund on February 28, 2014 at 2:53 PM

Shale! It’s everything it’s cracked up to be.

climbnjump on February 28, 2014 at 3:00 PM

Don’t let Landrieu, the witch, take the credit.

Schadenfreude on February 28, 2014 at 1:23 PM

Didn’t she propose to write a law that would let people keep their health insurance, pre-ObamaCare, if they liked their health insurance? I wonder what ever happened to that. Senator Kay Hagan has also proposed something similar … haven’t seen anything from her, either.

majorzot on February 28, 2014 at 3:03 PM

I would point out again that so much of this boom is happening on private and state lands, and not because of the Obama administration’s economic or regulatory policies, but in spite of them — and indeed, that the administration is actively preventing energy companies from bringing similarly robust economic recovery to areas that the federal government controls.

If part of the boom is on state lands, it should be remembered that Louisiana and Mississippi both have Republican Governors, who are anxious to develop energy resources under state lands…as do Texas, Oklahoma, and North Dakota.

Erika also mentions California as participating in the shale-energy/fracking boom, but it’s not clear whether Governor Moonbeam allows drilling on state lands. He’s probably too busy turning farms into desert to save the delta smelt, and buying up land for the Great Train to Nowhere.

Steve Z on February 28, 2014 at 3:07 PM

Frack the Feds! The South shall rise again – and all those states that have, in essence, already seceded from Federal overreach. Shades of 1860?

vnvet on February 28, 2014 at 3:51 PM

This whole shale and fracking boom sorta puts the lie to the old Peak Oil idea. Too bad the progressives haven’t caught up with the “science” they so loudly proclaim, over and over and over.

Infidelius on February 28, 2014 at 5:38 PM

Infidelius on February 28, 2014 at 5:38 PM

Actually, it was noted in that original Hubbert’s theory but no known method of extracting it from the tight shale was known at the time.

Kermit on March 1, 2014 at 3:23 PM

My family has land in North Louisiana. We lease mineral and timber rights. The timber can only be harvested about every ten years. And they can sink the oil and as wells fast enough for me. (Or frack or anything else they wish.

Tinker on March 1, 2014 at 5:12 PM