OWNERSHIP QUESTIONS CAN STYMIE DEVELOPMENT OF COALBED METHANE

Although the technology exists for commercial recovery of coalbed methane, production has been hindered because of the legal quandary as to ownership (see "Coalbed Gas Ownership in Pennsylvania-A Tenuous First Step with United States Steel y. Hoge," 23 Duq. L. Rev. 735, 737-38, 1978). Claims to ownership of coalbed methane can be, and have been, asserted on behalf of the coal owner or lessee, the oil and gas owner or lessee, the surface owner, or any combination thereof.

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