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Parkersburg Oil and Gas Museum adds drilling exhibit

Dedicated to Marcellus Shale techniques

Photo by Jeffrey Saulton Cutting the ribbon to the new exhibit at the Oil and Gas Museum in Parkersburg were, from left, Charlie Burd, executive director of IOGAWV; Alvyn Schopp, chief administrative officer and regional senior vice president for Antero Resources; Christy Chavez, president of the Southeastern Ohio Oil and Gas Association; Carl Heinrich, a founding member of the board of the Oil and Gas Museum, and Paul Hoblitzell, president of the Oil, Gas and Industrial Historical Association Inc.

PARKERSBURG — After two years of work, an exhibit explaining Marcellus Shale drilling opened to the public Thursday at the Parkersburg Oil and Gas Museum, 119 Third St.

Paul Hoblitzell, president of the Oil, Gas and Industrial Historical Association Inc., said the first-floor exhibit, sponsored by Antero Resources, focuses on the Marcellus Shale.

Alvyn Schopp, chief administrative officer and regional senior vice president for Antero Resources, said the exhibit allows the museum to show the old and new ways oil is drilled in the region. He said the new drills are longer and deeper compared to most of the wells on display at the museum.

“We wanted to do a compare and contrast to how it was done then and the technology today and the things we are using,” Schopp said. “We’ve included some pictograms to explain how the concept of a horizontal well is unique to the Marcellus and Utica Shale. Nobody is drilling an economical well anymore by drilling straight down.”

Schopp said the process used to drill the shale areas is amazing to witness due to its size and what they can do with the materials.

Photo by Jeffrey Saulton Paul Hoblitzell, president of the Oil, Gas and Industrial Historical Association Inc., spoke at the opening of a new exhibit at the Parkersburg museum about the Marcellus drilling process.

Since the drilling is done horizontally, he said, they can drill multiple wells using just one platform, instead of a platform for each well in the oil fields.

Charlie Burd, executive director of the Independent Oil and Gas Association of West Virginia, or IOGAWV, said the Marcellus Shale is an important resource.

“The future of energy in West Virginia is a mile and a half under your feet,” he said.

Schopp and Hoblitzell said the exhibit will be a permanent fixture at the museum and maybe expand over time.

Hoblitzell said he hopes to have some improved signage and drawings to help explain the Marcellus Shale drilling process.

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