SALEM - Oil and gas companies know it's here but the real trick, or challenge, as Gov. John Kasich told guests at the Pennant Midstream cryo plant dedication on Oct. 25, "is making the oil flow."
Wet and dry, natural gas liquids and all the processed derivatives are being drilled out from underneath our feet, Unity Township Trustee Robert Orr pointed out during the ceremony.
Kasich talked about employing Ohioans and keeping the oil and gas companies here for 40 years while enabling "adjacent technologies."
But his words, "... making the oil flow" resonate beyond separating the wet and dry gas - the so-called low-hanging fruit the exploratory wells are now unearthing.
There's crude oil being left behind that the current technology is unable to bring to the surface.
Mike Chadsey, public relations director with the Ohio Oil and Gas Association, said, "Shale rock is just so tight ... you fracture it and keep it open ... the permeability and porosity are important."
He said the fields are still being defined. The geology rules.
Chadsey said, "We know it's down there ..." but the permeability and porosity are the challenges Kasich mentioned.
Chadsey added, "It's just as important to find out where it isn't as well as where it is."
Hess Management, which partners with Consol Energy in oil and gas exploration, was asked about the Utica wet-dry demarcation line during it third quarter earnings call.
Hess is drilling in Harrison, Belmont and Guernsey counties in Ohio.
This year, Hess and Consol expect to drill 25 wells across 100 percent of the joint venture acreage they own. In the past quarter, the partnership drilled seven wells, completed eight and flow tested one.
Consol Energy operates an office in the Leetonia International Trade Center on state Route 344.