11/12/2013 4:46 PM
by Joe Hellriegel
BECKLEY - The coal industry has been under fire lately and some think that Marcellus shale could be promising for the area.
The Beckley Rotary Club held a meeting Tuesday in which they discussed the topic of natural gas. Supporters say in 2005, West Virginia had an unfunded liability for workers compensation of more than $3 billion and now it's less than $500 million from severance tax paid by the mineral industry. They also say coal is not the answer.
"That looks like that is winding down but the oil and gas industry has the potential to replace it, in terms of jobs and in terms of revenues for the state," said attorney James Russell.
He says although it works for the northern part of the state, he does not foresee any gas drilling in southeast West Virginia for many years.