The economic impact of the natural gas community isn't confined to any one region of the country. There are jobs related to natural gas in every U.S. state - and more than 30 states have at least 10,000 jobs related to natural gas.
Texas, Louisiana, Oklahoma, California, and Colorado had the highest natural gas employment in 2008. Though the southwestern and western United States historically have benefited the most from direct and indirect natural gas jobs, other regions have experienced tremendous growth as well, particularly Pennsylvania. Other states such as New York have vast untapped potential if nat gas production is allowed to proceed.
Natural gas jobs are quickly becoming some of the most sought-after opportunities in Pennsylvania. A recent job fair at the Pennsylvania College of Technology "drew lines that snaked around the football field when doors opened at 9 a.m." All 3,000 attendees were looking for jobs in the booming natural gas business.
The job growth is thanks to rich natural gas deposits found in the Marcellus Shale, which is considered by experts to be the second largest shale gas formation in the world. A recent influx of natural gas activity in the state has quickly expanded the number of well-paying employment opportunities, ranging from manual labor to highly technical work. Pennsylvania is at the forefront of the economic benefits being reaped by communities across our nation thanks to the vast U.S. abundance of this clean-energy resource.
A 2010 Penn State study concluded that the Marcellus Shale could generate over $8 billion in economic value this year, $1 billion in state and local tax revenue and almost 100,000 jobs in 2011-just in Pennsylvania.
Recent analysis documents that the Haynesville Shale has helped boost the Louisiana economy during tough economic times and is forecast to continue to have a broad positive impact well into the state's future.
The study, conducted by Dr. Loren Scott & Associates, looked at about 70% of the exploration in the state, and found that natural gas activities in the shale generated $10.6 billion in new economic activity and created more than 57,000 new jobs. It also generated $5.7 billion in new household earnings for Louisiana residents.
And, those huge numbers do not include the remaining 30% of exploration areas - so the actual total positive economic impact is much larger.