Marcellus Shale Impact Still Large in Wetzel County

The State Journal - Wetzel County has always been a producer of natural gas, but a boom in the Marcellus Shale gas drilling really put it on the map for the Mountain State. Read

Since 2008, the county at the base of the Northern Panhandle saw an increase in drilling by 6,000 percent.

A recent collaborative research effort looking into the shale drilling was released to show the effects of the oil and gas industry on West Virginia, among other surrounding states.

The Multi-State Shale Research Collaborative, of which the West Virginia Center on Budget and Policy participated in, released case studies April 10, which examined the impacts of shale oil and gas drilling in four active communities.

Read the case studies HERE.

The study looked at Carroll County in Ohio, Greene and Tioga counties in Pennsylvania and Wetzel County in West Virginia.

West Virginia is unique in that companies have been taking actions to sever surface rights from mineral rights, meaning some individuals do not own the mineral right so their land. This means some residents don't have control over fracking on their property and are limited in being compensated from the oil and gas companies.

"Overall, the impact is unclear with how much royalty payments are flowing in," said Sean O'Leary, fiscal policy analyst with the West Virginia Center on Budget and Policy. "Local officials will note jobs in gas industry are going to out of state workers."

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