News & Opinion » News

The real story


Reuters reports that Chesapeake Energy is dropping its court fight to extend gas-drilling leases in parts of New York. At issue were some Chesapeake leases in the Southern Tier, many of which, Reuters said, "were agreed to long before a boom in hydraulic fracturing swept the United States." | The article says that landowners in Broome and Tioga counties sued to stop Chesapeake from extending the leases. | Some of the landowners realized that they were getting far too little money for the rights to drill on and under their land. Others become concerned about the environmental impacts of fracking. | The article also says that Chesapeake's decision is partly due to frustration with New York's de facto moratorium on fracking. | But Chesapeake still holds quite a few gas leases in New York, and a good chunk of its leases in Onondaga County have automatic renewal clauses. It's probably safe to say that Chesapeake has leases in other counties that renew automatically. | And at least some of the landowners don't object to drilling and fracking on their property. They just object to the terms they negotiated before they knew how much the potential gas resource under their land is worth. New lease agreements are entirely possible.