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BNSF to hire 5,000 workers this year, invest $5 billion in railroad

Railroad.Fort Worth-based BNSF Railway plans to hire 5,000 workers this year as part of a $5 billion investment in the railroad, the company’s new president and CEO, said this morning during an interview on CNBC.

Carl Ice, 57, who took over the CEO post from Matt Rose on Jan. 1, said the new jobs will be spread across the railroad’s network but that the biggest number will be members of train crews being added to serve its growing business.

The company is also adding 500 locomotives and recently announced plans to purchase 5,000 next-generation tank cars to haul crude oil from fields such as the Bakken Shale.

Ice told the business news network that the capital investment plan, $1 billion more than it spent in 2013, is an unprecendented level.

The hiring will include about 2,000 new jobs, with the rest replacing people who are retiring, said spokesman Steven Forsberg. BNSF has more than 41,000 employees, with about 3,500 in the Fort Worth area, including its headquarters complex located off Western Center Boulevard and a large intermodal shipping facility at Alliance.

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Natural gas pipeline push continues in Centre County

PipelineTanks-300x171By: Gary Sinderson

BELLEFONTE, Pa. — With the continuing growth of the Marcellus Shale industry across the commonwealth and in Centre County, the push continues to try to share the natural gas resources found in the area. But a major hurdle in getting the gas out of the region and putting it to use in the area is a strong pipeline network.

Experts have said the natural gas reserves found below the area could last for decades, but most of the gas being extracted is being pumped out of the region and leaders are hoping a new pipeline in northern Centre County and other interconnects to current pipelines will help fuel the Centre region.

Susan Hannegan with the Centre County Planning Office said she is in touch with what is going on in the natural gas industry and where there is growth in the northeast and southwest areas of the country.

“The volume of gas coming out of those is so great that they’re going to explore and build out the production in those areas,” Hannegan said. “We also in Centre County lack the pipeline infrastructure to have all of our wells into production.”

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Beaver County firms place wager on Shell building petrochemical plant

Potter TownshipBy Timothy Puko and David Conti

After eight years of up and down business, Ed Vescovi is hoping the best is yet to come for the dormant biodiesel plant he oversees on the banks of the Ohio River in Beaver County.

There are plans to revive the site with as many as 85 new workers, including a new river dock and wastewater treatment plant for Marcellus shale gas drillers. The ultimate bet is even bigger, that a multibillion-dollar petrochemical plant Royal Dutch Shell plc may build just down the road could help turn the largely wooded and hilly site in Potter into a booming industrial park.

“I’ve got a lot of time in here, so I’m very interested in getting this running. It’s a shame to see all these millions sitting here being wasted,” Vescovi said. “It’s a great opportunity. If Shell comes in, it’s an added bonus.”

The chance at that bonus — to get an early position on spin-off business from what would be a largely new industry in Western Pennsylvania — was a big motivator for the site’s new owner, Weavertown Transport Leasing Inc., CEO Dawn Fuchs said. It paid more than $2 million to buy the 125 acres in October, she said, declining to cite exact figures.

All around Beaver County leaders are seeing a similar push: Industrial parks are beefing up, engineering companies are moving in, and new offices, hotels and housing are on the way. While many Pittsburgh businesses are still hanging back until Shell decides, it’s clear that some are already moving fast to try and make it big.

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Blue Racer expands its midstream infrastructure

Drilling2-300x171By Tom McParland


Midstream infrastructure continues to develop in the wet-natural-gas window of the Utica Shale, which has seen the bulk of the activity of Ohio’s drilling boom.

Blue Racer Midstream, a joint venture of Caiman Energy II and Dominion East Ohio Gas, has announced long-term agreements with prominent producers to gather and process natural gas with its growing network of pipelines and processing facilities.

The new commitments came from companies that are devoting significant assets to extracting liquid-rich gas from the Utica’s sweet spot, which includes parts of Carroll, Harrison, Guernsey, Belmont, Noble and Monroe counties in the southeastern part of the state.

One of the producers to sign with Blue Racer, Eclipse Resources, is planning an “aggressive drilling program” on more than 95,000 acres there, which includes doubling its rigs by the end of the year, the company said in the statement.

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Gas-Fired Power Generation USA: The Generator’s Perspective

natural-gas-electrical-generation-plant1Successfully plan, upgrade and operate your generation fleet with knowledge on leading utilities’ natural gas strategy

The US power generation industry is in the midst of a monumental transformation – from majority coal-fuelled to becoming more and more focused on natural gas. Coal plant owners have announced 54,742 MW of coal-fuelled generating capacity will be shut down by 2025. On top of this, over 60% of planned generation additions between 2012 and 2040 will be fuelled by natural gas.

To gain a deeper understanding of why the future of US power is so centred on natural gas, FC Gas Intelligence spoke to representatives of five companies that can boast a wealth of experience in natural gas power generation, all of whom have a major focus on investing in natural gas power for the foreseeable future.

Click here to get your free copy of the 12 page report containing the interviews

The report includes interviews with these key figures in leading utilities:

  • John Adams, Senior Vice President of Power Operations at Calpine Corporation
  • Bill Nordlund, Managing Director of Panda Power Funds
  • Ron DeGregorio, President of Exelon Power
  • Etienne Senac, Vice President of Fossil Generation at Entergy
  • Matthew Usher is Director of New Technology Development and Policy Support at AEP Generation

These representatives from the nation’s most renowned utilities and independent power producers spoke to us exclusively on why they’re betting on natural gas power, how they’re investing for the future, how they’ve overcome challenges, and how they see the future of the industry evolving.

This report is a vital tool for all stakeholders in the US power generation industry to gain valuable insight and understand what the leading utilities are planning long-term.

Click here to download the report now!

For information contact Jessica Allen – Jessica@fc-gi.com

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