West Virginia: Gastar adds Marcellus acreage

By OGJ editors
HOUSTON, Feb. 28
– Gastar Exploration Ltd., Houston, and its joint venture partner Atinum Marcellus I LLC have leased 3,300 gross acres in southwestern Marshall County, WV, prospective for wet gas in Devonian Marcellus shale.

Gastar will pay 45% of the lease acquisition cost for a 50% interest. Initial drilling and completion will be eligible for the drilling carry that is a part of the previously announced joint venture between the firms.

The acreage is located at PPG Industries’ Natrium, WV, chemicals site along the Ohio River and provides excellent access to water and natural gas infrastructure. As operator, Gastar expects to begin drilling in the second half of 2011 and has identified as many as 30 locations to be drilled over the next several years.

The acreage, when combined with Gastar’s existing leasehold in Marshall and Wetzel counties, helps Gastar create a large and mostly contiguous block in a liquids rich area of the Marcellus play.

Dominion, Richmond, Va., took an option in January on land at PPG’s Natrium facility at which Dominion would construct a 300 MMcfd natural gas processing plant (OGJ Online, Jan. 12, 2011).

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