The 'Wizards of Scare' on gas drilling
My Irish nephew tells me there's shale gas under the farm that's been in the family for four centuries. "That's nice," I tell him. "Get a lawyer for the drillers and ear plugs for the wind and solar crowd."
In Otsego County, it's been four years into the shale revolution. Nationally, we're watching the reversal of dependence on foreign oil (and gas). We even export these products. Internationally, power relationships are shifting as historic (and unfriendly) producers are no longer in the driver's seat. Now, even Ireland has a shot at energy independence.
Locally, the antis concentrate on politics, assuming their scare tactics are permanently rooted in the public consciousness.
That's a bad assumption. Reality eventually prevails, shredding the curtain of negativity created by our local press. You can't hide reality forever.
In Realville, people drive through Pennsylvania.
They don't see the Dante's Inferno painted by the antis. They see economic activity and prosperity.
When they talk to the Pennsylvanians, sure, they hear about a traffic pinch point in Towanda and the problem (now solved) in Dimock, but they overwhelmingly hear the positives -- better roads, better schools, full employment, retention of working farms, increased contributions to charities, greater opportunities and the young returning for jobs.
In Realville, people listen. Soon they start commuting the 100 miles to jobs with benefits.
Next, they're moving closer to those jobs and the opportunities afforded. These people also talk, further tearing back the curtain, revealing the "Wizard of Scare."
There are too many variables to predict when gas development will come to Otsego County. But it will come. With five distinct formations only 180 miles from the stoves and furnaces of Queens and other Northeast markets, gas will be extracted.
So, to the "Wizards of Scare," I only have one word.