Newell tapped for national committee

PARKERSBURG – Mayor Bob Newell has been appointed to a national committee on energy and natural resources policy.

The National League of Cities announced Monday Newell’s appointment to the league’s 2013 Energy, Environment and Natural Resources Policy and Advocacy Committee. The committee helps the league develop federal policy positions on issues involving air quality, water quality, energy policy, national wetlands policy, noise control and solid and hazardous waste management.

Newell said Tuesday he was selected in part because of West Virginia’s role in the development of Marcellus shale drilling. Though Parkersburg has not been directly linked to drilling, the area has been looked at as a possible location for an ethane cracker plant.

A cracker facility takes oil and gas and breaks them up into smaller molecules. An ethane cracker creates ethylene, a compound used in the manufacture of a variety of products from plastic to antifreeze.

The National League of Cities represents 19,000 cities and 49 state municipal leagues. More information on the National League of Cities can be found at www.nlc.org.