Drilling in the state dates back to the late 1800's. Today's technology allows companies to access shale once thought impossible to reach.

Shale that'sso rich in natural gas and oil that five of the largest publicly-traded energy companies in the world-- Chesapeake, BP, Exxon Mobil, Hess and Sunoco -- are invested in Ohio.

"A lot of energy companies are pinning their futures on burning natural gas generate electricity. That's good for Ohio," says Ohio State University Extension Educator Mike Hogan.

"Even as the coal jobs decrease, we're seeing an up-tick of economic activity and jobs."

Oil and gas: Expanded coverage

Those in favor of drilling point to estimates that Ohio's economy will get a boost of $4.8 billion and 65,000 jobs by 2014. The employment projection includes not only industry jobs, but those created from the need for personal services, such as retail stores, restaurants, hotels and hospitals.

But some question what the cost of drilling will be on thehealth and safety of Ohioans and preservation of natural resource?

In all, there are 275,000 wells across the state, 64,000 of which are actively produced.

"You have to build [wells] fundamentally correct to begin with or you're going to have problems," says Rick Simmers, chief of the Division of Oil and Gas Resources Management for the Ohio Department of Natural Resources.

Each of those wells are monitored by 51 inspectors working for ODNR to oversee them.

"They're simply spread too thin to pay attention to that large number of wells," says Kari Matsko, director of the People's Oil and Gas Collaborative.

Matsko says more control should belong to communities.

"Just like with any kind of zoning situation, you have to have a public meeting," she says."You can't just put industry everywhere and anywhere. You have to make intelligent decisions based on health and safety."

"There's as many unknowns about this industry as there are knowns," says Hogan. "This is the most complex issue I've ever seen. It affects so much, the economy, natural resources. It sometimes has pitted neighbor against neighbor."

It's safe to say, the decisions made today will no doubt impact tomorrow.