By Brett Dunlap
Parkersburg News and Sentinel
PARKERSBURG, W.Va. — The lines of communication were opening up in Parkersburg Thursday between news organizations around the state and officials with companies involved in the emerging oil and gas industry.
The Parkersburg News and Sentinel, in association with the West Virginia Press Association (WVPA), hosted members of the Independent Oil and Gas Association (IOGA) of West Virginia at the Blennerhassett Hotel. The meeting was another in a series of meetings being done by the press association around the state.
”The natural gas and oil industry is certainly such a big part of our future,” said Don Smith, WVPA executive director.
Brett Loflin of Northeast Natural Energy, Charlie Burd of the Independent Oil and Gas Association (IOGA) of West Virginia and Tom Rowan of Gastar Exploration at a gathering Thursday of the West Virginia Press Association and members of the IOGA to discuss opportunities that might be coming to the area in the oil and natural gas industries.
Representatives from both groups talked about the importance of keeping the lines of communication open in presenting the public information about the oil and gas industry, work going on in the area and employment opportunities as well as being able to get answers to questions and concerns people may have.
With last week’s announcement of the ethane cracker plant being planned for Wood County, attention is being brought to the industry and what kinds of opportunities can be brought to the area through the development of the Marcellus Shale and Utica Shale natural gas deposits.
”This will be the big boon area where things will be happening,” Smith said.