Publication: The Wheeling Register
Wheeling, WV, United States
INDIANA'S GAS FIELDS.
According to the Chicago Record those hasty manufacturers who left good paying plants in convenient sites for manufacturing to go to the much-advertised Indiana gas fields on a bonus attracted by the prospect of cheap gas fuel, are likely soon to regret their change of base. Our Chicago contemporary which has made a study of the Indiana gas supply concludes that in two years time the two great supply companies of the territory will find their product exhausted.
It believes that there will be gas for domestic purposes for ten of fifteen years longer, but that for industrial purposes natural gas will be soon out of use and the results to industries built up on cheap fuel will be disastrous.
According to the opinions expressed by drillers and operators the great reservoir, formerly 2,800 square miles in extent, has been narrowed to an area of 200 square miles of first-class producing capacity. The big companies which supply Indiana, Illinois, and Ohio are connecting their pipe lines into this contracted field. It is estimated that within six months 325,000 consumers will be drawing gas from this territory.
The pressure averages from 100 to 150 pounds around this narrow district for a distance of twelve or fifteen miles, but, outside this radius, when a drill has been sent down, salt water, instead of gas comes up. There are about 157 Indiana towns using natural gas, to say nothing of consumers in Ohio and Chicago.
Many hasty manufacturers who moved from this section to that delusive field under the impression that the gas there was practically inexhaustible, and by some unexplained process of nature would renew its supplies when they got low are likely soon to witness the explosion of this theory and to realize their mistake. They turned their backs on the sure thing they had in this section to go after a will o' the wisp, and doubtless they begin to wish they were back again where if they can't get an abundance of natural gas they can get the next best thing, an abundance of cheap coal.