Fracking fears may prove groundless

Earthquakes in the Ohio Valley?

Possible, yes. Anything is.

The Cleveland Cavaliers may win an NBA title someday. I may hit it big on the lottery one day.

Anything is possible, but many things are very unlikely. Those three aforementioned happenings are nearly impossible.

The shale drilling business is as close to an economic savior as we will ever see here locally. Shale offers a pipeline of hope, money, jobs and a higher standard of living to an area in need of all of them.

Now gloom and doomers are trying to rain on our renaissance parade by linking fracking — a method to extract the gas from deep underground — to earthquakes. The concern came after a small quake hit the Youngstown area which is home to a fracking operation.

I place little significance with linking fracking with quakes. It is much too early in the game for such a knee-jerk reaction. One isolated episode should not create widespread panic in the drilling business.

The EPA is attempting to kill our coal industry, another Ohio Valley economic lifeblood. Thousands of local jobs may disappear because of clean-air regulations.

If the doomsayers have their way with fracking, we may lose out on a economic windfall, billion dollars in scope.

I will take my chances. Quality of life should mean more than just clean air…it should also mean a well-paying job. I don’t believe fracking will shake our homes, but I do believe it will jump start our economy.


HAVING THE Conotton Valley High football staff guide the Ohio all-stars in this summer’s Rudy Mumley Charity Classic is a nice refreshing sidelight to the game. Conotton is often times termed Forgotten Valley due to its location and lack of gridiron success. Having the Rockets’ Mike Bigler in charge of the Buckeyes will be a great boost to the Conotton program. It will also give him the opportunity to coach talent he has never been exposed to, such as players from Steubenville, Ferry, St. C. and others.

STEVE LAPOSKI was inducted into the Union Local Hall of Fame Friday. He was most deserving of that special honor. Steve was the architect of one of the premier OVAC girls’ basketball programs in the 1980s and 90s. The Lady Jets were monsters during his tenure. He was one of the pioneers who laid the groundwork for a girls’ hoop explosion in the valley.

MICHELLE OBMAMA is the latest big name to join the Twitter world. The first lady began tweeting Friday.

THE BUCKEYE Local Board of Education made the right choice when it named Phil Pest as the Panthers’ new head football coach. Phil is a solid football man and a character individual. I have known him since he starred at Bethany College as an all-conference tight end. Phil will provide a seamless transition to the program. He was quite deserving of a head coaching opportunity after decades of paying his dues as a grid aide.

I HAVE championed the cause for years that Ohio University Eastern should host as many post-season basketball tournaments as possible. It is finally coming to fruition. In addition to the girls’ and boy’s OVAC hoop events, under the direction of Rick DeLuca, OUE will welcome two sectional and two district tournaments. The girls’ and boys’ Division II sectionals as well as the boys’ Division II and III district events are all set at OUE. Barnesville High athletic director Mark Cook serves as tournament director for the latter four tournaments.

THE OHIO State University President E. Gordon Gee is a loose cannon when it comes to making off-the-cuff remarks. Back when Tattoo Gate was unfolding he said he hoped Jim Tressel would not fire him. Now he makes a poorly-choiced Polish comment. But Gee flourishes in Scarlet & Gray Land as he is a cash cow, attracting massive donations to OSU.

THE CALENDARS being sold by the Bellaire Chamber of Commerce featuring pictures of days past of the All-American Town are printed and available.

The calendars may be secured at Hughes Xerographics, the chamber or the mayor’s office or call Chamber President Lou Ann Bennett at 676-4817. The cost is $10.

Kapral may be reached at