In Harrison Co., OH, landowners are starting to be contacted by Global Geophysical Services for permission to access our land for a 3D seismic study being paid for by Hess.  Current rate being offered is $5/ac and the testing grid is 1/4 mile x 250 ft.  Currently, they will be testing a large portion of Harrison Co. starting just east of the east end of Tappan Lake and moving east through Cadiz and eastern Harrison Co. townships. 

I did not sign the permission form as my land is not leased so I feel I have no obligation to sign the form and the legal terms included on the permission form look really weak.  If I do choose to sign, I'll want to include a lot more legal language outlining liability, reclamation, timber, collateral damage, duration of testing, etc., plus perhaps more than the $5/ac rate.

So what experience do others in Ohio, PA or West Virginia have with 3D seismic testing?  What legal terms have you been offered/accepted?  Did you counter with your own legal terms?  What rate per acre?  Did you allow them to survey and mark the bore holes before signing the permission?  What was your general experience with their treatment of your land?  Any lessons learned?

Any info you can provide regarding recent testing will be appreciated!

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Looked at a contract for Ashtabula county ,  $3 per acre on the standard contract. Don't know if some got more or not. I'm North of the test zone.

I live in Harrison County and recently got the same pitch.  The landman said that they are mapping the Black River formation that lies under the Utica.  They don't work for an oil/gas company; they are trying to develop a product to sell to an oil/gas company.  I kicked it around with my attorney, but I just don't see any advantage in signing it.  The equipment looks pretty heavy and I don't want my fields and forest rutted up for $5 an acre. or for $50 an acre, for that matter.

Make sure you get properly compensated:


February 2, 2012

Global Geophysical Reports Record Revenues and Operating Margins for the Fourth Quarter

EPS of $0.14 Per Share, Normalized for Tax Adjustments

HOUSTON, Feb. 2, 2012 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Global Geophysical Services, Inc. (NYSE:GGS) announced today that fourth quarter operating income was $15.3 million on revenues of $113.1 million. Normalized for tax rate adjustments, diluted earnings for the fourth quarter were $0.14 per share, or $0.04 per share without adjustments. Improved results from the Proprietary Services segment along with data library late sale contributions from the Multi-client Services segment were the primary drivers of the company's performance during the quarter.

Global's revenues were $385.4 million for the full year 2011, compared with $254.7 million for 2010, an increase of 51%. Operating Income for 2011 was $44.9 million, compared to an operating loss of $11.0 million for 2010.

Highlights and Notable Accomplishments

  • Proprietary Services revenues for the fourth quarter were $62.3 million and generated gross margin of $9.0 million, or 14.4%. Sequentially, Proprietary Services gross margins increased by $2.2 million, or 3.7%, on revenues of $60.1 million during the third quarter of 2011. Margins for the fourth quarter reflected the contribution of data acquisition programs that were contracted during the period.
  • Multi-client late sale revenues were $14.2 million during the fourth quarter and were $48.3 million for the full year 2011. Late sale revenues for the full year 2010 were $16.4 million.
  • During the fourth quarter, Multi-client revenues exceeded Multi-client cash investment by $16.9 million. Beginning with the third quarter of 2011, Multi-client revenues have exceeded Multi-client cash investment by $25.1 million. Net book value of the Multi-client library as of December 31, 2011 was $232 million.
  • Backlog at December 30, 2011 was approximately $201 million, of which $78 million is for Proprietary Services and $123 million is for Multi-client Services. Approximately 85% of the backlog is expected to be recognized as revenues prior to June 30, 2012.
  • Global increased its recording instrumentation capacity to 180,000 channels as of December 31, 2011. Approximately 20% of the company's channel count is its proprietary land nodal AUTOSEIS®(1) HDR units.
  • HDR channels have now been successfully deployed on multiple US 3D seismic programs, as well as for frac monitoring applications, and have been tested in areas throughout North and South America including jungle and arctic environments. During the first quarter of 2012, the company is deploying the Autoseis HDR technology into Brazil, Colombia, and Alaska and is expanding channel counts in the US Lower 48. During 2012, Global expects to increase its Autoseis channel count by an additional 100,000 channels.

Richard Degner, President and CEO, commented:

"The company's fourth quarter produced several milestones for the company. Revenues and operating income reached record levels on the strength of the Proprietary Services and Multi-client Services contributions.

Global's Multi-client data library programs increased to approximately 7 million acres, of which 4.3 million acres were acquired as of year end. Also, the Multi-client business reached the inflection point at which revenues exceeded cash investment. Going forward, we expect pre-funding levels for new programs to be at or above cost along with sustained late sale contributions from the company's expanding base of library assets. Multi-client cash investment for 2012 is expected to be consistent with prior years between $170 - $180 million.

AUTOSEIS® continues to drive both increased efficiency and increased quality of our data acquisition programs. Having successfully applied the technology on several North American programs, the use of HDR is expanding domestically and internationally, with exceptional application on logistically and environmentally challenging programs. Starting in Q2 2012, 26,000 HDR's will be deployed on a West Texas Multi-client Shale project where Global will record over 4.5 million traces per square mile, an order of magnitude higher than most shale 3D projects currently underway. Acquiring data at this density has not been previously commercially feasible with conventional cabled systems.

Autoseis HDR is the primary recording platform for Global's microseismic frac monitoring services. Deployment with patent pending array design have enabled the recording of higher fidelity data. During 2012, we will leverage the continuous recording capability of the HDR to provide passive monitoring capabilities, complementing active source seismic programs.

Global's planned increase in HDR channel count during 2012 will be accompanied by a planned reduction of cabled channel counts.  We expect to divest approximately 40,000 channels of cabled systems. Net PP&E investment (adjusted for asset divestments) for 2012 is expected to be in the range of $30 - $40 million and primarily allocated to the investment in HDR capacity growth. 

The company continues to broaden its data processing, analysis and interpretation services offerings. In 2011 we completed the integration of STRM LLC, now routinely offering their Tomographic Fracture ImagingTM as part of our microseismic monitoring services, and providing detailed descriptions of the pre-existing natural fracture networks which are effectively the permeability fairways in shale plays. In the fourth quarter, we provided this service on an international basis for the first time. Our recently completed acquisition of Sensor Geophysical adds substantial capabilities in the area of 3C and 4C processing. Combined with our expanding consulting offerings in the area of unconventional resource analysis, Global is able to provide a fully integrated geosciences platform to our customers."


Just the other day a guy from Global drove 2 hours to hand deliver letters to 2 of my neighbors wanting to do this testing.  What do you make of that and should we get exctied?

Yes, get excited, but talk to your neighbors and try to reach a verbal agreement not to start signing papers right away.  The oil & gas is not going anywhere and time is your biggest ally.  Landmen(women?) will try to play one neighbor off against another. 

Now you should all be talking about maybe pooling your interests.  Get a good gas & oil attorney. 

Please be aware that I am not in the oil & gas industry, nor am I an attorney.  But there is a plethora of information to educate yourself and you will get more $$ if you band together and take your time.  Lot's of time. 

Harrison county is definitely one of the "honey" counties that "Big Oil Pooh Bear" would love to get at the wet gas & oil below.  Buy three dozen donuts & coffee and meet at a church, township hall, barn, diner, talk to some legal experts.

Start with Cliff Little, 740-489-5300 or 740-732-5681,

Time end any disputes with neighbors if you have any in the area.  Unity is key.

Sorry to imply that Cliff Little is a legal expert.  He isn't, but he has made over 60 presentations around the state on this.  He works for The Ohio State University Ag. Extension Office in Gurnsey or Noble counties.   Can't remember, but I have spoken with him and attended his presentation in Vinton County.

Kevin, what, in your opinion, would be proper compensation for Harrison county?

I am definitely not an Oil & Gas guy, I work in data warehousing (computer guy)

for a college here in Columbus.  My family owns 200 acres in Vinton, Co., and

that is why I am watching the Utica Play.  But, if you read the posts below:

Option 1:  Go for the big $$, and try to get HESS to sign a full-blown lease (you and a gas & oil attorneys' lease, not THEIRS) before they do any geo-surveying.  Things to consider:

  • How may acres do you own?  If it is over the limit needed by the state to drill, you are in the drivers seat.  Getting contiguous landowners to sign-on with you sweetens the pot for HESS.  This is by far the most important consideration.
  •  Harrison County is definitely in the "hot" zone from the Utica's standpoint.  Vinton County, unfortunately is not for my family.
  • HESS & big oil are holding all the cards when it comes to geo-physical data and that data is proprietary and you and I will never see it (unless you try to negotiate it in your lease, HESS will balk at this and in my opinion will not agree to it.)
  • What HESS is doing by surveying your land is mitigating their risk and trying to avoid the Wild West scenario.

Option 2:  Make HESS put some skin in the game, and negotiate a two-part lease (I don't even know if this is possible, I am not an oil & gas attorney).  Part 1, make them pay up front to geo-survey the land, say $100 an acre.  Part 2 of the lease, make them agree to pay you the big bucks if the survey finds certain hydrocarbon's, the $5k - $15k amount.

  • HESS is not a small oil company and will not probably flip (sell) your lease.  That is why, if you have the wet gas on your land, you could conceivably get a higher amount + royalties.  Many leases in the counties east of you were bought for $5 - $6k and acre, bundled, and then sold to another oil company in huge blocks of acreage in the $10 - $15k range.  Kind of like mortgages.
  • Harrison County is very hot, and more than likely, if they want to survey your land, they suspect that there is wet gas & maybe oil under the ground.  Wet gas, followed by oil is where the big $$ is at.
  • Basically, what your saying to HESS is, sure, come on the land,  get core samples & radar studies, and if you find a honey hole, I want to get compensated, more so then option 1, if not, then I know my land isn't in the big play.

Option 2 (if even possible), allows the company to get out there and dig, BUT if they find it, you get a bigger piece of the pie. 

One question you have to ask yourself, is do you even own the mineral rights to your land?  I am in the process of establishing that for my family. 

Also, another note.  I spoke to a lease guy that works at one of the large players in eastern ohio.  He was nice, courteous, returned my phone call, and answered all my questions.  He said that a lot of geo-surveying is being done by 3-D imaging by the geo-surveying companies by them just driving along the county roads and state routes in counties.  Cost's them nothing and they don't have to get permission from landowners.

So the fact your getting contacted for someone to go on your land vs. just driving along a state route or county road leads me to believe that HESS smells wet gas & oil. 

Sorry for the long winded response, but I will send you the maps from ODNR.  But do me one big favor, whatever you do, contact a Gas & Oil lawyer before you sign anything.

Also, I attended a meeting by two Ohio State Extension agents that were excellent.  He is a farmer and has leased his land.  He can give you ton's of information.  His name is Cliff Little, 740-489-5300 or 740-732-5681,

If 60 Minutes came to Ohio to interview someone about the Shales plays, it would be this guy.

HESS has positions in Harrison County already, so they maybe trying to consolidate their

non-contiguos parcels.  The only question I have, is if HESS & Consol energy are already in Harrison Co., how come your land is not leased already?  Unless Consol sold HESS their own mineral rights that they have left over from the coal mining days.

Hess Acquires Additional Acreage in Ohio’s Utica Shale

NEW YORK--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Hess Corporation (NYSE: HES) announced today it has acquired Marquette Exploration LLC and other leases in Ohio’s Utica Shale, boosting its acreage position by 85,000 net acres at a cost of approximately $750 million.

“With these transactions, we have built a strategic acreage position in the Utica Shale, allowing us to strengthen our portfolio of unconventional resources in high quality assets, leverage our operating expertise and create significant potential for future growth in reserves and production”

The leases, in which Hess will have a 100 percent working interest, are in Jefferson, Harrison and Belmont counties. Appraisal activities on this acreage are planned to commence in the fourth quarter. Together with the previously announced joint venture with CONSOL Energy, the transactions provide Hess with approximately 185,000 net acres in the Utica Shale play.

“With these transactions, we have built a strategic acreage position in the Utica Shale, allowing us to strengthen our portfolio of unconventional resources in high quality assets, leverage our operating expertise and create significant potential for future growth in reserves and production,” said John Hess, Chairman and CEO of Hess Corporation.

Hess Corporation, with headquarters in New York, is a global integrated energy company engaged in the exploration, production, purchase, transportation and sale of crude oil and natural gas, as well as the production and sale of refined petroleum products. More information on Hess Corporation is available at

we are leased but with CHK they said they are working for both.

I see it just the other way round.  I can get (at least) $5/ac from Global and THEN lease to Hess for 5-6K/ac.  Why not get a little extra before leasing?  Judging from Kevin's post, I think they can afford to pay me $25/ac (the going rate in TX?).

I think 3-d is different the big heavy equipment( think heavy equip is 2-d) like they will dig holes and use an explosive? With all the wires and crap whatever the money , get a copy of the seismic readings and post it on here, seems like there is an expert on here about everything and they will read it back to you.


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