Fracking: Potential for Regional Economy is Exciting

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Published on September 6 2013 7:18 pm
Last Updated on September 6 2013 7:33 pm
Written by Greg Sapp

(ILLINOIS OIL AND GAS ASSOCIATION PRESIDENT BRAD RICHARDS {left} SPOKE WITH ENTREPRENEUR CLAUDE COATS, WASHINGTON SAVINGS BANK PRESIDENT CLAUDE HUDSON AND A-R-C COMMUNITY SUPPORT SYSTEMS EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR MIKE POE AT THE CHAMBER FIRST FRIDAY LUNCHEON)

The president of the Illinois Oil and Gas Association told a Chamber First Friday luncheon crowd today that the potential is significant for economic growth as a result of horizontal drilling for oil and hydraulic fracturing or "fracking".

Brad Richards lives in Fairfield, an area in the heart of the territory expected to be explored when fracking begins.  The Illinois legislature has passed guidelines for fracking, but implementation of the law is still underway.  Proponents say the Illinois guidelines are the most stringent in the nation.

Richards is excited about the potential for oil production growth from fracking, noting the huge growth in oil production in recent years since fracking began in North Dakota and Texas.  He said you should listen to who is presenting any negatives about fracking.  He cited a Matt Damon movie from a couple of years ago that cast oil developers in a bad light.  He said the film was bankrolled by interests in the United Arab Emirates.

Richards said Effingham County will benefit from fracking.  He said initial projections are that those benefits will not necessarily be from oil production, but from the restaurants and other accommodations in the Effingham community.  Richards said not to count out Effingham on the production end, though; saying that so far oil rights have not extended to this area, but they could depending on where deposits are found.

Here's Greg Sapp's conversation with Brad Richards...