Fired ODNR Official Returns with Views on Best Locations in Utica

Larry Wickstrom used to be Ohio’s official state geologist and chief of the ODNR’s Division of Geological Survey. He was fired in May 2012 because he updated and released a map showing new boundaries for the Utica Shale–where the best places to drill would be located (see Did This Map Get the Ohio State Geologist Fired?). The map update caused some of the previous lines to change, and that upset a few people, especially Larry’s political bosses. That map has since changed by quite a bit. Drilling has drifted south to counties like Harrison, Guernsey, Belmont, Noble and Monroe.

The very talented Wickstrom had been employed for 29 years by ODNR, but his exit didn’t mean he was washed up. Far from it. Larry is back (in private business). Last week he shared his keen and experienced insights with the 1,500 people who attended the recent Ohio Oil and Gas Association winter meeting in Columbus on the latest thinking about the best places to drill in the Ohio Utica. He notes that the sweet spot for Utica drilling is much smaller than folks thought just a few years ago…

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