Ohio panelist on shale gas: ‘Mother nature gave us a great gift. You either play the hand, or you fold it.’

At The Ohio State University on Wednesday, ACC President Cal Dooley led a panel discussion on the promise of energy-rich Marcellus and Utica Shales to Ohio’s economy and power supply, and how policy makers, new infrastructure and a qualified workforce can help deliver on that promise.

The expert panel, one of many at the Ohio Governor’s 21st Century Energy & Economic Summit, included two representatives from the chemistry industry. Each panel member was tasked with providing Gov. Kasich with insights that would help his administration craft an energy policy that “supports Ohio’s long-term economic growth and job creation.”

Given Ohio’s vast shale gas resources – it has access to 15.7 trillion cubic feet of natural gas from the Utica Shale – the state could emerge, for example, as a prime location for new petrochemical facilities that rely on ethane from natural gas as a feedstock for manufacturing.

A recent ACC study found that building a new petrochemical plant in Ohio would generate $7.5 billion in chemical industry output in the state, 17,000 Ohio jobs in chemistry and supplier industries, $1 billion in Ohio wages and $169 million in state tax revenue.

Overall, the Ohio Oil and Gas Energy Education Program estimates the shale gas boom will create more than 204,000 jobs by 2015, add more than $12 billion to Ohio wages and generate more than $478 million tax revenue.

As Ohio’s 10TV News quoted Dooley:

We are anticipating at a minimum it’s a 100 year supply of natural gas, and could be as much as 200 years. We’re (the U.S) kind of the Saudi Arabia of natural gas.

Another panel member seemed to agree, adding:

Mother nature gave us a great gift. You either play the hand, or you fold it.

NYT/Climatewire: Ohio Governor Prepares Energy and Environment Plans for His Newly Gas-Rich State

WYYV 33: Shale Drilling Could Jump-Start Ohio Economy, Officials Say

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