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EQUITABLE RESOURCES DETAILS BUSINESS GROWTH, FORECASTS HIGHER GAS AND OIL PRODUCTION AT NEW YORK ANALYST MEETING

 EQUITABLE RESOURCES DETAILS BUSINESS GROWTH, FORECASTS
 HIGHER GAS AND OIL PRODUCTION AT NEW YORK ANALYST MEETING
 PITTSBURGH, April 30 /PRNewswire/ -- Equitable Resources, Inc. (NYSE: EQT) told securities analysts in New York today that despite the travails of the natural gas industry during the past several years, the company has had an "exemplary performance and is measurably stronger now than at any time in the recent past."
 President D.I. Moritz cited the new assets and profit potential the company has added to its Resource segment through acquisitions and investments, the expanded markets for its utility and transmission operations, and the fact that Equitable has managed its growth while maintaining a double A minus debt rating. "Our financial strength means we can continue to take prudent advantage of choice opportunities that come along," he said.
 The Company forecast double digit percentage increases for both natural gas and oil production in 1992. It estimated gas volumes in the range of 45 to 49 billion cubic feet (Bcf), up from 40 Bcf in 1991, and oil production of between 2.4 and 2.6 million barrels, compared with 2 million the previous year. Contributing factors will be the full-year impact of two major acquisitions completed in latter half of 1991 -- one in the Rockies and the other in the Appalachian Basin -- as well as increased production expected from its Appalachian coalbed methane and Big Lime oil programs, offshore Gulf of Mexico operations, and continued development of recent discoveries.
 The company said that it has made three oil field discoveries in the Sherwood formation of the Williston Basin in North Dakota.
 The first two discoveries are currently producing 1,100 barrels per day (gross). The initial well at the third and most recent discovery is producing at a rate 140 barrels per day, but is believed be on the edge of the reservoir. A gas field discovery at Sixshooter Dome in central Montana, that last year added 3 Bcf to reserves, could ultimately yield 9 to 12 Bcf.
 With respect to its regulated gas transmission and distribution businesses, the company said the market restructuring just ordered by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission provided some significant growth opportunities.
 Officials noted, for example, that new rules placed a premium on gas storage, and that the Company's Equitrans pipeline was currently expanding its storage capacity by 5.7 Bcf while exploring possible joint ventures with other pipelines and producers. They also noted that the new latitude for pipelines to charge market prices for natural gas rather than passing through actual costs dollar for dollar would expand the profit potential on sales. Further, the competitive market in which Equitable's pipeline operations have thrived would be opened wider by the restructuring.
 For its distribution division, the company said the rules will provide more flexibility to manage loads, control gas supply, and use transportation links to make sales to traditional and non- traditional upstream markets.
 Equitable Resources is a diversified energy resources and utility services company. Its energy resource segment is a major producer of natural gas and oil in the Appalachian Basin and Rocky Mountain region and is also active in the Gulf of Mexico and Colombia, South America. The utility service segment is involved in natural gas transmission and storage through two interstate pipelines, and distributes gas to over 263,000 customers primarily in southwestern Pennsylvania and in parts of West Virginia and Kentucky.
 -0- 4/30/92
 /CONTACT: Brian Plante of Equitable Resources, 412-553-5911/ CO: Equitable Resoures, Inc. ST: Pennsylvania IN: OIL SU:


JT -- PG004 -- 4789 04/30/92 09:34 EDT
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Apr 30, 1992
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