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Alex Wiederspiel/WVMetroNews

By Alex Wiederspiel in News | August 29, 2017 at 5:45PM

CANONSBURG, Pa. — West Virginia University’s Energy Institute, along with assorted partners, presented it’s first findings to the public Tuesday to showcase the region’s ability to attract and support the petrochemical industry through the use of gas storage hubs.

Doug Patchen, the director of WVU Appalachian Oil and Natural Gas Consortium, said the study shows a bright potential future in the ability of West Virginia, Pennsylvania, and Ohio to support the petrochemical industry.

“There are some areas of small liquid storage in upstate New York and down in a couple places in the Appalachian Basin, but nothing of this scale,” Patchen said.

We thank Sens. Shelley Moore Capito and Joe Manchin, who worked to help ensure a vote would be taken to confirm Neil Chatterjee and Robert Powelson to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission before the U.S. Senate adjourned for the August recess.

For states like West Virginia, the vote to confirm the FERC nominees and restore a quorum at the agency was a critical action necessary for the completion of more than a dozen pending energy infrastructure projects across the nation, including the Atlantic Coast Pipeline in West Virginia.

John Miller - Executive Editor

It’s no secret that the Marcellus and Utica Shale gas fields that lie under Pennsylvania, Eastern Ohio and Northern West Virginia have the potential to be an economic game-changer in terms of a source of cheap, clean energy and a catalyst for the rebirth of America’s manufacturing base.

Certainly with five planned interstate pipelines crossing our state in order to get the gas to market — Virginia, North Carolina and South Carolina, as well as off-shoring facilities in Maryland — we have a vested interest in the development of this natural resource.

With coal having a somewhat limited long-term future as a base load for power generation and natural gas having surpassed coal as the largest source of electricity in the nation last year, the future is indeed bright.

However, if we are not careful, West Virginia could miss out on the opportunities to maximize the full economic impact that a 100-year supply of natural gas provides.

Unfortunately, West Virginia has already lost out to both Western Pennsylvania and Eastern Ohio on landing the much-desired cracker facilities that break out the ethylene that serves as the base stock for the plastics, chemical and various manufacturing industries.

Charleston, W.Va. (August 17, 2017) – The West Virginia Oil & Natural Gas Association (WVONGA) applauds West Virginia’s legislative leaders, Senate President Mitch Carmichael and House Speaker Tim Armstead, for their foresight in elevating natural gas issues through the formation of the new interim Joint Committee on Natural Gas Development.  .  

“President Carmichael and Speaker Armstead have demonstrated they understand the important role natural gas development has and will continue to play in West Virginia’s economy,” said Anne Blankenship, executive director of WVONGA. 

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