Specter Sees Economic Benefits From Gas Drilling

Sun Gazette

U.S. Sen. Arlen Specter, D-Philadelphia, sees great economic potential for the local area from the Marcellus Shale and believes the gas industry can help ensure drilling does not adversely impact the environment.

The longtime federal lawmaker was in Lycoming County to meet with local officials as well as environmental and gas drilling groups.

Natural gas, he noted, represents a bridge between fossil fuels and renewable energy resources.

“If we find a way to free ourselves from OPEC oil, that would be great,” he said. “It will be an economic opportunity for Williamsport.”

A severance tax levied on gas, he said, is an issue for the state to decide.

But if enacted, it is something that officials should proceed with cautiously, and needs to include some type of revenue sharing between the state and counties where drilling occurs.

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