MOUNDSVILLE, W.Va. (AP) — Oil and natural gas companies with Marcellus Shale operations in the Northern Panhandle are turning their attention to the Utica Shale.
The Utica Shale underlies the Marcellus Shale in much of Marshall, Wetzel and Ohio counties.
The Intelligencer and Wheeling News-Register reports that Gastar Exploration is drilling an exploratory well in both the Utica and Point Pleasant formations in Marshall County.
Gastar president and CEO J. Russell Porter tells the newspaper that the company plans to move both its Marcellus and Utica drilling programs to Wetzel County later this year.
Stone Energy Corp. operates mostly in Wetzel County and plans to drill a Utica exploratory well in June. Fossil Creek of Ohio also is exploring the Utica Shale in the panhandle.