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Norse Energy shuts down, unable to drill in NY

Norse Energy shuts down, unable to drill in NY

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) _ A Norwegian company that invested heavily in upstate New York gas leases that it couldn't develop under the state's fracking moratorium has shuttered its U.S. affiliates and terminated its last eight employees.

Oslo-based Norse Energy Corp. announced last Friday it was converting from Chapter 11 to Chapter 7 bankruptcy, meaning it was ceasing operations. Norse Energy Corp. USA, based in western New York, and its U.S. parent, Houston-based Norse Energy Holdings, sought bankruptcy court protection in December 2012.

Norse tried unsuccessfully in August to sell pipeline rights-of-way and gas leases on 130,000 acres in upstate New York to raise money to pay debts.

New York has had a moratorium on gas drilling using high-volume hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, since it began an environmental review in 2008.

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