MARION — “The publicly funded Muskingum Watershed Conservancy District broke its pledge to delay temporary water sales, environmental advocates argue. The district, however, maintains its decision will not impact recreation at any of its 12 reservoirs and will allow it to invest the proceeds into projects that benefit the public.
The mineral-rich Utica Shale has attracted multibillion-dollar oil and gas firms to the state, where they want to use controversial horizontal hydraulic fracturing techniques to release natural gas and lucrative liquid hydrocarbons.
Fracking requires millions of gallons of water, which is where the conservancy district – owner of all the land surrounding six man-made lakes near the bull’s-eye of drilling activity – comes in. After signing a few leases allowing oil and gas exploration and making one agreement in April to sell water, the district administration was deluged with complaints.”
— Russ Zimmer, Marion Star