The Mathews County Board of Supervisors is taking some flak for its recent adoption, on a split vote, of a resolution regarding groundwater protection and fracking.
The gist of the criticism is that hydraulic fracturing for oil is seen to be unlikely in Mathews County—that neighboring localities are in the targeted Taylorsville Basin, but Mathews is not.
Let us differ and make our point by turning back the pages of time.
Nearly 90 years ago, almost everyone living in and around Mathews Court House thought they were going to get rich. Electricity had finally come to the village; people were getting water pumps; and some friendly residents invited crowds to watch them “light off” the gas pumped out ahead of the water. Indeed, some kind of gas did burn from the water spigots in those early days. Was it just a parlor trick or indicative of oil deposits deep below?
An oil company was convinced to come and it drilled about 2,000 feet before hitting bedrock (it said), pa...
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