The upcoming exploration of natural gas in the Marcellus and Utica Shales is generating a lot of questions from southeastern Ohio communities.
A representative from Energy in Depth Ohio met with the Muskingum County commissioners on Thursday. Shawn Bennett discussed the importance of keeping the public informed about the project.
"Hydraulic fracturing and horizontal drilling is a safe measure to go about recovering some of the oil and gas that we have underneath these areas," said Bennett.
There’s been about 80,000 hydraulic fracturing jobs in Ohio since drilling began in Stark County in the 1950s, and Bennett said no contamination to groundwater has been proven. He said Muskingum and surrounding counties can expect to see job growth in unrelated industries.
"You’re going to have hotels that are going to be booked solid, restaurants that are going to have waits, money that will be spent throughout the community at all of the local businesses," said Bennett.
One of the common complaints about shale drilling is the effect on the roadways. Bennett said the oil and gas companies want to establish a longterm relationship with the communities, and maintaining roads is the best way to do that.