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Zoning variance encouraged

To the Editor,

All across West Virginia, communities welcome investment, job creation and opportunities for economic growth. In recent years, it’s been oil and natural gas producers, pipeline operators and the small businesses in the supply chain, as well as manufacturers and power generators who have been investing and growing in our home state.

With Southwestern Energy’s proposed well pad, the City of Weirton has an exciting opportunity to welcome more development and reap the benefits of additional tax revenues to the city, which in turn, will drive job growth and further advance the local economy. As we’ve seen over the past decade, shale gas development in the panhandle and North Central West Virginia is a safe, well-managed, and well-regulated process that drives our state’s economy and achieves cleaner air.

This proposed well pad location – with temporary activity levels similar to a construction project – is no different. Southwestern Energy is the nation’s third largest natural gas producer and is committed to responsibly producing the energy we need and has long-been a leader in advancing safety and environmental best practices.

Southwestern Energy’s ability to develop West Virginia-sourced natural gas under stringent environmental regulations and guidelines is something in which our communities should take great pride. Furthermore, West Virginia will collect severance and property taxes from this project – funds that will directly support local hospitals, schools, and other essential public services.

The Gas and Oil Association of West Virginia encourages the City of Weirton to grant the necessary zoning permit to welcome long-term and sustainable economic growth and investment.

Charlie Burd

Executive Director,

Gas and Oil Association of West Virginia

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