ITHACA, N.Y. — Cornell Cooperative Extension will host a series of public meetings across New York’s Southern Tier during July and August to educate residents about issues associated with development of natural gas production in the Marcellus Shale.
The Marcellus Shale region runs from the Southern Tier of New York through western Pennsylvania, eastern Ohio and West Virginia.
Natural gas production companies hope to use a new method of drilling to tap previously unreachable underground formations.
The output is expected to significantly increase natural gas production in the region.
The Extension road show will bring Cornell educators to communities to discuss environmental, community and economic development, and regulatory and leasing issues related to natural gas drilling.
Rod Howe, assistant director for Cornell extension, said that intensive natural gas development has the potential to transform New York communities in both positive and negative ways.
Howe added that examining the ramifications of natural gas drilling at the outset “makes it more likely that negative impacts will be minimized and positive aspects realized.”
Meetings will take place from 7 to 9 p.m. Residents should contact their local extension office for more details.
The tentative schedule is as follows:
* Chenengo, N.Y. — July 22, Chenango Town Hall (call 607-584-9966 to register)
* Waverly, N.Y. — July 28
* Watkins Glen, N.Y. — Aug. 5
* Liberty, N.Y. — Aug. 17
Cornell Cooperative Extension is also planning a New York Marcellus Shale Summit on Nov. 30 at the Owego Treadway Inn.
An online Natural Gas Leasing Resource Center includes details about the public sessions as well as information and studies about the ramifications of drilling. The Web site is: http://gasleasing.cce.cornell.edu.