– Part 1 – (running time 51 minutes)
– Part 2 – (running time 59 minutes)
– Part 3 – (running time 43 minutes)
Chairman John Pippy, Senator Gene Yaw lead Senate Majority Policy Committee hearing in Williamsport.
Williamsport — The Senate Majority Policy Committee held a public hearing today in Williamsport on the multiple issues surrounding the Marcellus Shale gas reserves.
The hearing, led by Committee Chairman John Pippy (R-37) and Senator Gene Yaw (R-23), included discussion with local government officials, industry representatives, environmental organizations and other experts. The gathering was held on the campus of the Pennsylvania College of Technology.
“It’s been well established that the natural gas within the Marcellus Shale region provides an extraordinary – even historic — opportunity for energy and economic development,” said Pippy. “The next, critical phase is to develop an approach that takes advantage of this opportunity and addresses the challenges that come with it. Pennsylvania has to get this right.”
The shale rock region reaches across southern New York, Pennsylvania, West Virginia and Ohio and is estimated to contain about 360 trillion cubic feet of natural gas.
“This is the most exciting industry to come into Pennsylvania in the past 100 years,” Yaw said. “How many times in a lifetime does a state get an opportunity to attract an industry that could potentially create 80,000 jobs and billions of dollars in revenue for its citizens and provide some sense of energy independence for decades to come?”
The state’s recoverable gas resources are estimated to be worth about $500 billion. Among the issues surrounding natural gas drilling that the hearing focused on were taxation, infrastructure and land reclamation. The environmental impact, including the effect on water quality, was also discussed.
“The economic and energy benefits are significant,” Pippy said. “The economic impact will be felt over decades, and go well beyond the gas industry. It will likely spin off additional jobs in construction, retail and other industries. The natural gas produced can be exported across the nation and the globe to help ease the shift to alternative energy sources. But, despite the global reach, the most immediate impact will be felt here in the communities sitting atop the Marcellus Shale formation. It’s important that your voice be heard.”