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Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Gas & Oil Drillers To Present Public Program Thursday

Members of the public who are interested in natural gas production in Potter County will be able to learn more about the subject and share concerns with industry officials on Thursday night (Aug. 27) at the Coudersport High School auditorium, starting with an open house at 6:30, followed by a presentation at 7.

It’s hosted by the Marcellus Shale Committee, formed last year by two statewide trade organizations to educate local officials, landowners, and others on the production of natural gas located deep underground in Marcellus shale formations. Potter County has already seen some production and companies plan to step up their drilling for the next several years.

Industry leaders are forecasting major job opportunities and other economic benefits. Environmental organizations are emphasizing the need to protect water quality.

“We encourage residents to learn more about the natural gas industry by obtaining information directly from the industry representatives,” said Rich Weber, committee co-chair and president of Atlas Energy Resources.

“Drilling for natural gas in the Marcellus shale formation has the potential to positively impact Pennsylvania in a number of ways,” said Ray Walker, another co-chair and a vice president for Range Resources.

Citizens can also learn more about the Marcellus shale gas production by attending monthly meetings of the Potter County Natural Gas Force, held on the second Tuesday of each month at 7 pm in the Gunzburger Building. Next session scheduled for 7 pm on Sept. 8.

Each Task Force meeting includes a guest speaker as well as committee reports in six subject areas: Water Quality, Public Education, Taxation, Employment Training and Industry Technical Issues, Public Safety and Law Enforcement, and Township Impacts/Planning.

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