Rentech dodges mineral rights problem

Published 12:01 am Thursday, March 13, 2008

NATCHEZ — Rentech’s future development in Adams County may be saved by the relinquishment of certain mineral rights that would have impeded Rentech’s progress.

Jerry Ogden, owner and manager of Day Dreams Resources, LLC said a letter has be sent to the Mississippi Oil and Gas board expressing his wishes to relinquish the permit that would allow his company to drill for oil on the land currently owned by International Paper.

Ogden has only relinquished the permit for the Gulmon No. 1 well.

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IP’s 450-acre plot is scheduled to be sold to Rentech on or before April 1.

On Monday, Adams County Board of Supervisors President Henry Watts said issues dealing with Ogden’s desire to drill would have hindered Rentech’s land acquisition.

Ogden said the permit was withdrawn at the request of International Paper’s legal counsel.

“Day Dreams Resources, LLC wants International Paper Co. and Rentech to consummate their deal on the International Paper mill site,” he said. “By no means is Day Dreams Resources, LLC trying to keep them from doing that.”

Had Ogden pursued his plans to drill, Bobby Cox, the board’s attorney, said litigation would have been the next step.

But now it looks as if litigation will not be necessary.

Attorney Bob Latham, specially hired by the board to assist in Rentech’s land closing, said Ogden’s relinquishment of the drilling permit should be seen as a “good sign.”

Ogden said for the betterment of Adams County, he decided against drilling.

Ogden cited an increase in revenue and jobs to be developed by Rentech as part of his reason relinquishing the drilling permit for the Gulmon No. 1 well.

Rentech’s Natchez project manager Joe Regnery said he has seen a copy of Ogden’s permit relinquishment letter and was pleased by it.

“We are very pleased with Day Dreams’ decision to remove their permit,” he said.