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STUDY: 45,000 Jobs Have Already Resulted from Marcellus Shale Exploration

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A new study shows that exploration of the Marcellus Shale has created over 45,000 construction jobs and contributed over $5 billion in spending to the economy. The study, from the Oil and Natural Gas Industry Labor-Management Committee, concludes that spending on construction and maintenance grew by over 60 percent between 2012 and 2013. The figures are based on manhours worked in the states of Pennsylvania, Ohio, West Virginia, and Maryland assuming each worker logged 1,600 hours in a year.

The researchers from the University of Illinois conclude that exploration of the Marcellus Shale has been a major factor in the resurgent economy:

The American Petroleum Institute (API) welcomed the researchers’ findings:

“This study reaffirms that responsible domestic energy production is fueling our economic recovery,” said [Louis Finkel, Executive Vice President of API]. “We need to fully embrace this energy renaissance and develop the affordable reliable energy all Americans need and want.”

“The U.S. energy boom is lifting up the middle class and lowering costs for American families,” said Finkel. “Workers in our industry are earning about seven times the federal minimum wage. These are good paying jobs and we need more of them.”

The advances in horizontal drilling and hydraulic fracturing have allowed the United States to become a net exporter of natural gas. Finkel touched on this as he noted the importance of the industry to the economy:

“We must seize this great American made opportunity by enacting smart energy policies. Energy is not a partisan issue; Washington needs to reject duplicative regulations, open the door to U.S. energy exports, and eliminate counterproductive fuel mandates.”


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