For over a century, the law in Pennsylvania had been clear - a reservation or conveyance of “minerals” alone did not include natural gas. Instead, in order to convey or reserve natural gas, the word “gas” must be specifically enumerated in the deed. Given that longstanding precedent, most experts agreed that a reservation or conveyance in a deed of “minerals” alone would not include gas from the Marcellus shale. However, in September 2011, the Pennsylvania Superior Court issued an opinion causing great uncertainty for Marcellus shale operators in the Commonwealth. Butler v. Charles Powers Estate, 29 A.3d 35, 2011 Pa.Super. 198 (2011). The Pennsylvania Supreme Court settled the issue yesterday, ruling that, consistent with 131 years of precedent, natural gas found within the Marcellus shale is presumptively not a “mineral” for the purposes of private deeds.