On the energy front, one of the biggest stories of 2011 was the development of shale gas.  And, if the current trends continue, it will likely be the story of 2012 as well.

The Wall Street Journal reports,

The boom in low-cost natural gas obtained from shale is driving investment in plants that use gas for fuel or as a raw material, setting off a race by states to attract such factories and the jobs they create.

Recently, natural gas prices have plummeted.  “Because electric utilities often burn gas,” the Journal notes, “that price drop has helped bring down average electricity costs.

That’s a big deal for manufacturers, which consume one-third of the energy produced in this country. Lower energy prices make manufacturers more competitive and help offset other areas where manufacturers in the country are at a disadvantage compared to our competitors.

The shale boom’s impact on manufacturing was highlighted in a recent report completed by PricewaterhouseCoopers and released jointly with the National Association of Manufacturers.

The report shows that shale development means more investment in our economy, lower energy prices and one million more jobs by 2025.

VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Rating: 5.0/5 (1 vote cast)
Will 2012 Be Another Big Year for Shale?, 5.0 out of 5 based on 1 rating