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Better, Faster, Stronger: Building on a 160-Year Legacy of Innovation

CNX marks its 160th anniversary as a cornerstone of the Appalachian region.

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By Positive Energy Hub Staff

April marked 160 years of CNX deploying the brightest minds, skilled workers, and tools to develop the abundant energy resources transforming our region, country, and world. 160 years of energy development and our work today continues to challenge the status quo to become better, faster, and stronger contributors to Appalachia’s energy economy, a clean environment, energy security, and innovation incubator.

Perhaps no company embodies the Pittsburgh region’s transformation quite like CNX. From humble, 19th century beginnings to present-day prominence, CNX has woven itself into the fabric of Appalachia’s history, shaping and reshaping industries with each passing era.

But what truly sets CNX apart is not just our longevity, but our relentless pursuit of innovation and improvement. We’ve weathered economic downturns, technological revolutions, and societal shifts. Yet amidst the highs and the lows, CNX has remained a constant and emerged more resilient each time.

From our beginnings pioneering mine methane capture, to revolutionizing modern-day unconventional shale development, we are now harnessing our foundation and assets to truly catalyze a better future fueled by Appalachian natural gas.


Around the same time as other Pittsburgh titans including Westinghouse, Alcoa, U.S. Steel, PPG, and others emerged, CNX was founded in 1864 and began powering America’s new, industrialized economy.

Fast-forward to the dawn of shale development. Successfully completing the company’s first horizontal Marcellus well in 2008 and first Utica well in 2012, we tapped engineering innovation and deployed multi-well pad drilling and completion techniques that unlocked our region’s vast hydrocarbon reserves and established Appalachia as the lowest cost Basin in the country.

The Appalachian region remains America’s largest and cleanest source of natural gas today – a testament to our industry’s competitive and innovative spirit.


Hydrogen, low-carbon and sustainable aviation fuels, compressed natural gas (CNG), and liquefied natural gas (LNG) are a few of the many emerging downstream uses for clean, abundant Appalachian energy CNX is activating. These applications encourage the use of low cost, ultra-low emission natural gas to displace traditional fuels like diesel and foreign oil, which strengthens local supply chains, domestic energy security, and reduces the environmental footprint from sectors like transportation, steel, cement, and other manufacturing.

Yet these new and improved processes are rooted in the company’s legacy asset base, intellectual assets, and innovative tradition.

Methane capture/abatement capabilities we established in the late 1900’s, for example, are being used today to turn waste methane emissions into a usable, ultra-low carbon feedstock for clean hydrogen development – addressing climate needs and domestic policy priorities.

More, our extensive surface holdings, technical capabilities, and substantial asset base in Appalachia gives us a competitive advantage to provide sequestration needs for a number of clean energy projects in the region. Our work today is paving the path to a more sustainable tomorrow powered by Appalachian natural gas.


2024 looks to be yet another landmark year for CNX as we continue to pursue the use of natural gas and its many applications to ignite change and sustain local economic prosperity as our world becomes more automated, data-driven, and technology-centered. CNX New Technologies business segment was established in 2021 to carry out these priorities, focused on waste methane capture and abatement, as well as forging strategic partnerships for the use of low carbon intensity feedstocks and the creation of derivative products in transportation fuels, manufacturing processes, and other markets.

These include new advancements in CNG and LNG production at small-scale, delivering cost, emission, and other efficiencies. The team also entered into a joint venture this month to launch a first-of-its-kind automated flowback solution to be deployed across the oil and gas industry.

While we’re proud of the achievements and innovations of the last 160 years, CNX's values drive us to continuously improve and deliver change in the industry across Appalachia and beyond. We're excited for what is in store for us, our partners, and the broader Appalachian region as we chart the next chapter of CNX for the next generation.


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Appalachia First
A vision for the future that embraces innovation and harnesses the talent, resources, and opportunities of Appalachia to transform our region, nation, and the world.




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A CNX news hub highlighting all aspects of our Appalachia First vision. Subscribe for insights on energy innovation, advocacy, and community engagement across the region.