Consortium of Energy Producers Announces Recommended Standards and Practices for Exploration and Production of Natural Gas and Oil from Appalachian Shales

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Consortium of Energy Producers Announces Recommended Standards and Practices for Exploration and Production of Natural Gas and Oil from Appalachian Shales
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The ASRPG's Recommended Standards and Practices for Exploration and Production of Natural Gas and Oil …

WILLIAMSPORT, PA--(Marketwire -05/01/12)- The Appalachian Shale Recommended Practices Group (ASRPG), a consortium of 11 of the Appalachian Basin's largest natural gas and oil producers, today announced the creation of the Recommended Standards and Practices for Exploration and Production of Natural Gas and Oil from Appalachian Shales.

The ASRPG's Recommended Standards and Practices for Exploration and Production of Natural Gas and Oil from Appalachian Shales were developed to promote effective safety, environmental and health practices consistent with the key recommendations of both the U.S. Secretary of Energy Advisory Board's (SEAB) final report issued in November 2011, and the National Petroleum Council's (NPC) Prudent Development report issued in September 2011.

Both reports acknowledge regional differences in geology, land use, water resources and regulation. Consistent with these findings, the Recommended Standards and Practices for Exploration and Production of Natural Gas and Oil from Appalachian Shales reflect existing primacy of state regulation in the areas it addresses, which encompass each phase of the life cycle of a well. The entire document may be viewed in the attached .pdf file.

In conjunction with the Recommended Standards and Practices document, the ASRPG issued the following statement:

"As producers in the Appalachian Basin, we strive to be responsible operators that conduct business in a transparent and sustainable manner, and openly communicate with stakeholders. ASRPG's members are committed to conducting operations in compliance with all applicable federal, state and local laws, regulations and ordinances, and implementing standards, practices and procedures that meet or exceed regulatory requirements. The continuous evolution of technology used by the oil and natural gas industry has improved economic opportunities in the Appalachian region, energy security and the ability to conduct operations in a safe and environmentally responsible manner. ASRPG's goal is to encourage operators to implement today's technologies that enhance safety and environmental performance. We also recognize it is essential for all operators to continuously improve and adopt effective practices as technology evolves."

The ASRPG's consensus-based approach to developing the recommended standards and practices for Appalachian Shales provides a roadmap to enhance transparency and regulatory compliance, as well as empowers workers to stop work that is potentially unsafe, emphasizes the importance of optimizing local content and encourages the use of clean-burning natural gas. The ASRPG plans to submit the recommended standards and practices document to State regulators and legislators in the Appalachian areas of operations, as well as the Interstate Oil & Gas Compact Commission (IOGCC), and the State Review of Oil and Natural Gas Environmental Regulations (STRONGER) to inform state regulatory frameworks and reviews. Additionally, the group plans to disseminate the document to important producer organizations such as the Marcellus Shale Coalition, America's Natural Gas Alliance, the American Petroleum Institute, West Virginia Oil and Natural Gas Association, Independent Petroleum Association of America, Independent Oil and Gas Association of West Virginia, Ohio Oil and Gas Association, and the Pennsylvania Independent Oil and Gas Association.

ASRPG's members are assessing options to periodically review and update the recommendations to reflect improvements in practices and technologies, and to effectively and systematically disseminate the recommendations to producers and stakeholders in the Appalachian region.

About the ASRPG:

ASRPG's mission is to identify and disseminate responsible standards and practices for effective environmental, health and safety practices utilized in shale natural gas and oil development operations in the Appalachian region. The ASRPG consists of the following participating companies:

Anadarko Petroleum Corporation (APC - News): Anadarko's mission is to deliver a competitive and sustainable rate of return to shareholders by exploring for, acquiring and developing oil and natural gas resources vital to the world's health and welfare. As of year-end 2011, the company had approximately 2.54 billion barrels-equivalent of proved reserves, making it one of the world's largest independent exploration and production companies. For more information about Anadarko, please visit www.anadarko.com.

Cabot Oil & Gas Corporation (COG - News): Cabot Oil & Gas, headquartered in Houston, Texas is a leading independent natural gas producer with its entire resource base located in the continental United States. For additional information, visit the Company's Internet homepage at www.cabotog.com.

Chesapeake Energy Corporation (CHK - News): Chesapeake is the second-largest producer of natural gas, a Top 15 producer of oil and natural gas liquids and the most active driller of new wells in the U.S. Headquartered in Oklahoma City, the company's operations are focused on discovering and developing unconventional natural gas and oil fields onshore in the U.S.. Further information is available at www.chk.com where Chesapeake routinely posts announcements, updates, events, investor information, presentations and press releases.

Chevron (CVX - News): Chevron is one of the world's leading integrated energy companies, with subsidiaries that conduct business worldwide. The company is involved in virtually every facet of the energy industry. Chevron explores for, produces and transports crude oil and natural gas; refines, markets and distributes transportation fuels and lubricants; manufactures and sells petrochemical products; generates power and produces geothermal energy; provides energy efficiency solutions; and develops the energy resources of the future, including biofuels. Chevron is based in San Ramon, Calif. More information about Chevron is available at http://www.chevron.com.

About EQT Corporation: EQT Corporation is an integrated energy company with emphasis on Appalachian area natural gas production, gathering, transmission, and distribution. With more than 120 years of experience, EQT continues to be a leader in the use of advanced horizontal drilling technology -- designed to minimize the potential impact of drilling-related activities and reduce the overall environmental footprint. Through safe and responsible operations, the Company is committed to meeting the country's growing demand for clean-burning energy, while continuing to provide a rewarding workplace and enrich the communities where its employees live and work. Company shares are traded on the New York Stock Exchange as EQT. Visit EQT Corporation at www.eqt.com.

Seneca Resources Corporation: Seneca, the exploration and production segment of National Fuel Gas Company (NFG - News), explores for, develops, and purchases natural gas and oil reserves in California and Appalachia. Additional information about Seneca and National Fuel Gas Company is available at www.nationalfuelgas.com.

Shell Oil Company: Shell Oil Company is an affiliate of Royal Dutch Shell plc and part of a global group of energy and petrochemical companies with 93,000 employees in more than 90 countries. In the U.S., Shell operates in 50 states and employs nearly 20,000 people working to help tackle the challenges of the new energy future. Shell is a leading oil and gas producer in the deepwater Gulf of Mexico, a recognized pioneer in oil and gas exploration and production technology, and one of America's leading oil and natural gas producers, gasoline and natural gas marketers and petrochemical manufacturers. Learn more about Shell in the U.S. at www.shellus.com.

Southwestern Energy Company (SWN - News): Southwestern Energy Company is an integrated company whose wholly-owned subsidiaries are engaged in oil and gas exploration and production, natural gas gathering and marketing. Additional information on the company can be found on the Internet at http://www.swn.com.

Talisman Energy Inc. (TLM.TO - News) (TLM - News): Talisman is a global, diversified, upstream oil and gas company, headquartered in Canada. Talisman's three main operating areas are North America, the North Sea and Southeast Asia. The company also has a portfolio of international exploration opportunities. Talisman is committed to conducting business safely, in a socially and environmentally responsible manner, and is included in the Dow Jones Sustainability (North America) Index. Please visit our Web site at www.talisman-energy.com.

About WPX Energy, Inc. WPX Energy -- (WPX - News) WPX Energy is an independent natural gas and oil exploration and production company specializing in producing natural gas, natural gas liquids and oil. The company has nearly three decades of experience in the industry and produces enough natural gas to meet the energy needs of 6 million homes per day. The company has a geographically diverse portfolio, with primary operations in the Piceance Basin, Bakken Shale and Marcellus Shale. To learn more about WPX, please visit www.wpxenergy.com

XTO Energy Inc. -- An affiliate of ExxonMobil, XTO Energy has interests in more than 40,000 oil and natural gas wells and 6.1 million acres of leasehold across the country. XTO has operations in many of the most prolific unconventional plays of the United States -- including the Bakken, Barnett, Eagle Ford, Fayetteville, Haynesville, Marcellus, and Woodford Shales. Bringing together XTO's experience and expertise in natural gas development with ExxonMobil's advanced technologies, financial strength, and leadership in the global energy industry has resulted in a truly exceptional organization. Learn more at www.aboutnaturalgas.com.

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