Schedule Next Jobs Forum Where They’re Drilling for Natural Gas

By December 8, 2009Economy, Energy

NBC Nightly News on Sunday ran a segment on the thousands available jobs in Bismarck and the rest of North Dakota, attracting out-of-state residents for jobs in health care, IT, energy, manufacturing and construction.

Energy has driven economic growth in the state, thanks to coal and, since earlier this decade, oil and gas development from the Bakken formation. An e-mailer — not me — expounded on NBC’s misdirected coverage today at National Review’s The Corner blog:

I think it would be important to point out to everyone, that ND’s job growth is fueled by the oil boom in that state from the Bakken shale formation. The video ignores that fact because it doesn’t fit the MSM’s sense of justice to grow our economy by doing something evil like developing our natural resources.

A hundred-year supply of natural gas has just been discovered in the last couple of years in the Marcellus Shale which underlies much of PA, NY and to a lesser extent other eastern states. If these states are open to the development of the natural gas like ND has been to the oil, they could enjoy the same economic situation. Unfortunately for the laid-off blue collar workers from those industrial states, the elitist environmental-minded politicians and ngo’s will likely block the potential economic boom.

To drill and produce the natural gas you need, drill rig hands, welders, electricians, road builders, general construction crews, engineers, petroleum geologists, environmental scientists (to do it cleanly), regulators (to make sure it is done cleanly), truck drivers, accountants, bankers and more. In addition to all those directly employed by an oil and gas boom, add all the support services those new people to an area need. Oil or gas booms can literally be like gold rushes of Western lore.

We don’t think the anti-energy forces will win in the end, but they’re definitely trying with the usual fear and falsehoods.

The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette covered the Marcellus Shale’s potential in a major Sunday business piece, “Natural gas locked in the Marcellus Shale has companies rushing to cash in on possibilities“:

According to a report released in July by Penn State’s College of Earth and Mineral Sciences, the Marcellus Shale helped create more than 29,000 new jobs in Pennsylvania in 2008. Of those, about 14,000 were directly related to Marcellus development. The remainder were created by what the study calls “indirect and induced impacts,” such as a restaurant near a drilling site hiring more staff because it is serving a larger lunchtime crowd.

The study predicts more than a decade of dramatic growth, with more than 48,000 new jobs this year, then another 98,000 in 2010.

By 2020, the study says, Marcellus development could add $13.5 billion to the state’s economy and create more than 176,000 new jobs in a single year.

NAM President John Engler is expected to talk about new natural gas developments in remarks tomorrow at the State Chamber of Oklahoma’s public affairs conference. Oklahoma is home to the Woodford Shale deposit.

The natural gas industry group, Energy in Depth, has lots more information on shale gas at its website,

UPDATE (2:45 p.m.): Now that you’re considering a move to Bismarck, take a look at Bismarck Tribune’s excellent website. Most popular stories:

  • Stray cow shot after disrupting bridge traffic
  • Wishek homeowner told to remove wind turbine says he’ll fight city hall
  • Mountain lion shot in Bismarck
  • It’s about 0 degrees there at the moment, but the big Midwestern storm passed it by.

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