Consol Energy Exec Dugan Optimistic About Natural Gas Drilling

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Trib Live

By Katelyn Ferrel

Consol Energy enters 2015 having for a year honed its natural gas operations and strategy.

The company began drilling at the Pittsburgh International Airport in July, corralled its natural gas pipeline operations in a spin-off partnership with Noble Energy in September and has plans to start a second one focused on its coal business.

Timothy C. Dugan is approaching his one-year anniversary as chief operating officer of gas with the company, helping to guide its emphasis on shale production. With a broad background in gas operations and management at Chesapeake Energy, Cabot Oil & Gas and EQT, the University of Pittsburgh alumnus returned to the area after working in Texas.

He spoke to the Trib about the company’s transformation. Here are edited excerpts.

Trib: Why did you come to Consol and how does your background influence the direction you’re taking?

Dugan: I saw that as a great opportunity. At the same time it gave my wife and I an opportunity to move back home.

We’re thrilled to be back in Pittsburgh, and I think I filled a need for Consol as they were making that transition. I bring to the table diversified exploration and production background. My background I think I was a great fit for this company because of where they are in the life cycle of being an exploration and production company. They’re going through a transformation. I bring a level of experience that has benefitted me and the company has benefitted from my experience. I think it’s been a good fit.

Trib: Where can Consol find efficiencies to get more gas out of wells but spend less money drilling?

Dugan: We are improving on that every day. We are seeing improving results on our wells; we’re seeing efficiencies from a productivity standpoint; we are drilling out wells, completing our wells in a much more efficient manner in less time the drilling time, (reducing) intervals in between drilling completion and production as much as possible.

Trib: Consol has made a concerted effort to pivot attention to gas, but with coal remaining a key part of its business. How will the new EPA rules to reduce carbon emissions from power plants affect Consol and the reliability of the grid?

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