The Shale Energy Revolution 'Reassured Me about America,' NY Author of "The Frackers" Tells NGI Business Wire DULLES, Va. -- November 6, 2013 George P. Mitchell and crew long have been credited with finding the trigger to unlock unconventional natural gas, but it was in fact a colorful cast of visionaries, oddballs and take-no-prisoner pitchmen who helped launch the United States on the road to energy independence, as told in the insightful, and at times suspenseful, new book by bestselling author Gregory Zuckerman, The Frackers: The Outrageous Inside Story of the New Billionaire Wildcatters. The Portfolio/Penguin book, which hit bookstores on Tuesday, is on target in telling the tale of a group of wildcatters -- winners and losers -- who risked almost everything on the promise of unconventional natural gas -- reserves uncovered through horizontal drilling and hydraulic fracturing -- fracking. Mitchell founded and nearly bankrupted Mitchell Energy & Development Corp. in his quest to discover the secret sauce that would capture commercial gas from the Barnett Shale. Aubrey McClendon and Tom Ward, both landmen, kept running into each other as they traipsed the country securing deals, so they decided to form Chesapeake Energy Corp. Harold Hamm, the son of poor Oklahoma sharecroppers, believed there was more oil than anyone imagined in an overlooked corner of the country. Mark Papa, who helmed an Enron Corp. oil and gas castoff, saw the resurgence in U.S. energy production but realized his company wasn't prepared for it. And then there's Charif Souki, a "super smart" Lebanese immigrant whose fortunes had disintegrated before he found an unlikely avenue for success in liquefied natural gas (LNG). Zuckerman, a Wall Street Journal reporter and bestselling author of The Greatest Trade Ever about the 2008 Wall Street financial crash, spent some time talking with NGI’s Shale Daily about his book. He admitted that as an East Coast journalist, he had preconceived notions of what he'd find in the middle of America. What he actually did find was a revelation. He told NGI he titled the book "The Frackers" not out of disrespect, but because it has become an international symbol of energy independence. Zuckerman's immersion in the life and times of the founders of the 21st Century energy revolution "reassured me about America." He contrasted the energy boom across the country with the East Coast where jobs for talented young people are hard to find, and "where many people are just sort of downbeat and don't have tremendous hopes for the future. "But then you start in the energy business and this revitalized industry and resurgence...It's completely different. It's like going back in time almost. You go up to North Dakota and the Williston and it's sort of like the tech world of 1999. It's wonderful to see these young people… the entrepreneurs out there, the resiliency of this country, of the frackers...People are coming from all over the world." In researching the book, Zuckerman found to his surprise that many in the industry have a respect for the environment and a love of nature, he told NGI. "A lot of them are geologists, and they like rock and they have ranches and they spend more time outdoors than I do." As for the war between the energy industry and dedicated environmentalists, "The truth lies in the middle somewhere, where, yeah, fracking can be done properly, but often isn't. But...we're sitting on the biggest natural gas deposits in the world...and we're coming out of the biggest economic downturn...and you're expecting our nation not to try and tap those cheap gas sources? It's better to work with those producers and put pressure on producers to improve how they do it." Sign up for a free trial and read NGI’s Shale Daily review of The Frackers and an interview with its author at www.naturalgasintel.com. NGI has been an independent voice delivering real-time news and price survey reports for the natural gas market since 1981 in its publications: Natural Gas Intelligence, Daily Gas Price Index, Weekly Gas Price Index and NGI's Shale Daily. Relied on by industry and government since 1988, NGI data is the industry's lowest cost essential data available on conventional and unconventional natural gas pricing. Contact: Natural Gas Intelligence James Geanakos, 703-318-8848 firstname.lastname@example.org
The Shale Energy Revolution 'Reassured Me about America,' NY Author of "The Frackers" Tells NGI
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