Here in Wise County, Texas we are no longer all that thrilled with the Barnett Shale. Of course, drilling has been happening here for a while longer than in the other shale counties so I’m confident that you’ll catch up with us.
Energy experts: Down time good for reflection
According to Theodori’s Public Opinion Research on Urban Gas Drillers survey, those polled randomly in Tarrant County gave the energy field kinder marks than those given in Wise and Johnson counties. For example, Theodori reported, in response to the statement “Natural gas operators are drilling and producing too close to homes and businesses,” 78 percent of Wise County respondents agreed and Johnson County had a 61 percent agreement rate, while only 57 percent of Tarrant County residents polled agreed. Responses to a statement saying the county was better off in the long run because of its energy drilling, similar results were found: only 65 percent of Wise County respondents agreed, Johnson County showed 79 percent of respondents agreed and Tarrant County showed 85 percent of respondents agreed.
“Tarrant County [has a] slightly more favorable perception than Wise County and Johnson County,” Theodori said. “… That’s statistically significant.”
Theodori said the numbers could reflect a newer energy field in Tarrant County versus Johnson and Wise counties or could reflect the difference in Tarrant County’s urban drilling versus Johnson and Wise counties’ rural drilling.
“What I take away is that the public has mixed views of the industry, and I have the empirical data to back that up.”
About Sharon Wilson
Sharon Wilson is considered a leading citizen expert on the impacts of shale oil and gas extraction. She is the go-to person whether it’s top EPA officials from D.C., national and international news networks, or residents facing the shock of eminent domain and the devastating environmental effects of natural gas development in their backyards.
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