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The Associated Press June 26, 2011, 12:30PM ET

Gushers highlight potential of Pa. gas field

Two unexpected gushers in northeastern Pennsylvania are helping to illustrate the enormous potential of the Marcellus Shale natural gas field.

Each of the Cabot Oil & Gas Corp. wells in Susquehanna (suhs-kwuh-HAN'-uh) County is capable of producing 30 million cubic feet per day. That's believed to be a record for the Marcellus and enough gas to supply nearly 1,000 homes for a year. The landowners who leased the well access are splitting hundreds of thousands of dollars in monthly royalties.

Drilling companies say they're getting better at coaxing natural gas from giant shale deposits underground.

As a result, the Marcellus has turned out to be an even more prolific source of gas than anyone anticipated -- leading drillers to boost predictions of how much gas they'll harvest from each new well.

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