Benefits and Costs of Marcellus Shale Natural Gas Extraction Studied

01/15/10
Benefits and Costs of Marcellus Shale Natural Gas Extraction Studied
    
    The League of Women Voters is in the midst of a one-year study to determine the benefits and costs of extracting the natural gas from Marcellus Shale in Pennsylvania. The study will focus on the effect the project would have on the Commonwealth’s water, air, infrastructure, agriculture, forests, tourism and economy.  
    
    According to an article announcing the study in the Pennsylvania League of Women Voters newsletter, the largest-known pocket of natural gas in the United States rests locked away in Marcellus Shale nearly a mile below the Appalachian Mountains and covers nearly two-thirds of the state. Depending on how much gas can be extracted, there is enough locked in the Marcellus Shale to meet the needs of the United States for the next two to eight years. The project presents the potential for increased revenue through leasing property and mineral rights and would create thousands of jobs in the area, though most of these jobs will only last until the conclusion of the project. Any Pennsylvanian living on the shale or with natural gas pipelines running through their counties may be affected by the project. 
    
    The League of Women Voters of Lackawanna County has teamed with The University of Scranton’s Task Force on Sustainability to host a forum to discuss the Marcellus Shale natural gas extraction. Speakers will include representatives from the Marcellus natural gas industry in Pennsylvania, Pennsylvania’s Department of Environmental Protection, and from environmental advocacy organizations Penn Future and Damascus Citizens for Sustainability.
    
    Teri Ooms, executive director of the Institute for Public Policy and Economic Development, will moderate the forum. Speakers include Jennifer Means, program manager for the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection, Pam Fendrock, outreach coordinator for PennFuture, Pat Carullo, co-founder of Damascus Citizens for Sustainability and a representative for the Marcellus Shale Industry.
    
    The forum will be held on Wednesday, Jan. 20, from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. in The University of Scranton’s Pearn Auditorium of Brennan Hall. The snow date is Jan. 27.
    
    The forum is free of charge and open to the public. For additional information about the forum contact The University of Scranton at 941-7401. For additional information about the study, visit www.palwv.org.
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