Residents Question MarkWest About Road Damage

Although residents attending the Marshall County Energy Exploration Task Force meeting this week support natural gas development, several of them also wonder why certain roads remain in relatively rough shape.

The group, founded in 2010 at the beginning of the county’s Marcellus Shale boom, now meets on a bi-monthly basis. It allows industry representatives to converse with public officials regarding problems the county may be experiencing because of the shale rush.

“I can’t understand why we are paving in other areas of the state when the roads here are so bad,” Delegate David Evans, R-Marshall, said Wednesday during the meeting at Grand Vue Park.

“I think we’ve all got road concerns, but I don’t think there is anyone here to address that,” added Cameron resident Bruce Whipkey.

Later, Joe Murawski, senior engineering manager for MarkWest Energy, and Emery Tyson, plant manager at the Majorsville plant, addressed the meeting regarding the plant that will be able to process 870 million cubic feet of natural gas per day by 2016.

“We employ 36 people down there, including myself,” Tyson said. “I like to hire people with either an electrical or mechanical background.”

Denver-based MarkWest continues expanding in both the West Virginia Marcellus shale and the Ohio Utica shale. In addition to Majorsville, the company operates the Mobley and Sherwood complexes in the Mountain State, as well as the Hopedale, Cadiz and Seneca centers in the Buckeye State.

Murawski said MarkWest sends natural gas liquids from Majorsville to either Hopedale or to a distribution site in Houston, Pa. From there, the company sends its ethane to either the Gulf Coast or to the Nova Chemicals plant is Sarnia, Canada for cracking.

The next task force meeting is set for 12:30 p.m. Aug. 5 at the Grand Vue Park Banquet Hall. It is open to the public.