Appalachian Basin Driving American Shale Production

The Marcellus and Utica Shale plays are driving America’s rapid increase in natural gas production, accounting for 85 percent of domestic shale growth since 2012, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA).

EIA’s report, which comes off the heels of 2014’s record-breaking year, reflects and further underscores the Appalachia Basin’s role in strengthening America’s energy security. As EIA notes,  “these regions [are] the driving forces behind overall U.S. natural gas production growth.”

eia

And as our region continues to drive national energy growth, the local, regional and global economic and environmental benefits tied to this historic opportunity are changing the game:

  • Pennsylvanians are already seeing the benefits of natural gas throughout lower home energy costs, according to a spokesman for York Co.’s largest electric utility, Met-Ed. (York Dispatch, 7/28/15)
  • In Beaver Co., switching to clean-burning, locally-produced natural gas prevented the closure of a power plant, saving “most of the plant’s 41 jobs.” (Elwood City Ledger, 7/28/15)
  • More Pennsylvanians will realize “shale gas’ lower cost benefits” by modernizing and safely expanding our region’s natural gas infrastructure network. (Allentown Morning Call op-ed, 7/28/15)
  • Another clean-burning compressed natural gas station is opening in Armstrong Co., expanding consumer access to the locally-produced and cheaper alternative vehicle fuel source. (Tribune-Review, 7/25/15)
  • “Our abundant supply of locally-produced natural gas is powering our homes, businesses and manufacturing facilities and increasingly being utilized on our roadways in the form of CNG, which is a cleaner and more affordable transportation fuel alternative.” (Daily American, 7/25/15)

While shale has helped create jobs and opportunity for countless Pennsylvanians – including tens-of-thousands of our regional building trades union members – even higher energy taxes threaten these broad benefits. To be sure, imposing a “highest in the nation energy tax” at a time when energy producers as well as small- and medium-sized local businesses across the supply chain are struggling with persistently low global commodity prices is bad policy that will cost even more jobs.

That’s why a wave of diverse Pennsylvania voices are calling on leaders in Harrisburg to help encourage shale development’s growth and the jobs that come with it. Join the fight today for energy jobs HERE — and follow #ShaleTaxFacts on Twitter for more information.