The shale drilling boom in is expected to create not just thousands of jobs but increased access to natural gas powered cars. Ohio Gov. John Kasich announced plans during his energy summit to convert the state fleet to run on natural gas and work with surrounding states to create enough demand for natural gas to keep production and fuel costs low, according to the Columbus Dispatch.
Honda just announced the 2012 roll-out of low-cost natural gas powered Civics in more than 30 states, according to the Mercury News. The cars will cost approximately 35 percent less at the fuel pump and qualify for high-occupancy vehicle land access in many states, according to Mercury News.
Ohioans shared their thoughts on the increased availability of natural gas powered vehicles and shale drilling via instant messaging, email and Twitter.
* “Shale is going to mean to Ohio this century what coal did in the last one — but cleaner. The jobs and decreased fuel and heating costs will aid all Ohioans. I would definitely be interested in purchasing natural gas powered cars for myself and my wife.” — Noah Brenner, small business owner, Upper Sandusky.
* “All the benefits of natural gas usage are great, but I still have concerns about the hydraulic fracturing process necessary to unearth the gas from shale. The EPA report about water contamination in Wyoming is scary. I hope the process is as safe as claimed and user error is the cause when fracking causes problems. As long as fracking is closely monitored, natural gas can lead us to energy independence without harming natural resources.” — Rose Gilbert, nurse, Cincinnati.
* “Fracking is not safe and we do not need to expand drilling to public land in Ohio. I am glad President Obama and the EPA haled the hydraulic fracturing planned inside Wayne National Forest. The Republicans are just pouncing on the fear of the poor and unemployed in these hard economic times. I consider natural gas powered car to be an extension of the blood money Republicans will be lining their pockets with if environmental groups do not put an end to shale drilling once and for all.” — Rashawna Eastman, Ohio State University graduate student, Columbus.
* “If the natural gas powered Civics are affordable, there will be a lot of them sold in Ohio once shale drilling gets going on a large scale. Natural gas is cleaner than traditional fuel and will save those of us who live in rural areas and spent almost an hour driving to work a lot of money. Shale drilling jobs will help local economies by generating tax revenue and keeping small restaurants and stores open.” — Frank Newlun, retired factory worker, Logan.
* “If the drilling is done correctly and routine inspections done, our natural resources will not be harmed. Governor Kasich is working hard to get a natural gas powered car plant to come to Ohio. Those jobs along with drilling related jobs will push Ohio onto a path of long-lasting prosperity.” — Bill West, small business owner, Belpre.