“The U.S. is the world’s number one producer of natural gas. The International Energy Agency believes that the United States could be producing more oil than Saudi Arabia in 2020- just seven years from now,” said Stephanie Wissman, the Executive Director at the Associated Petroleum Industries of Pa.
Wissman spoke along with Pennsylvania Independent Oil and Gas Association President Lou D’Amico.
“According to a December, 2012 IHS Global report, the state’s unconventional gas-related employment is expected to more than double to nearly 221,000 by 2020 and grow to 387,000 by 2035,” Wissman said.
But some caution that past job creation estimates have fallen short. Myron Arnowitt is the Pennsylvania State Director of Clean Water Action, an environmental group that has called for a moratorium on gas drilling.
“Obviously the industry doesn’t have a phenomenal past record in terms of projected jobs that were to be created. State bureau studies have shown it is more likely that 5,000-7,000 jobs would be created, nothing like what is being talked about the industry,” Arnowitt said.
Keystone Energy Forum is an education group formed by API and PIOGA. It announced that Gov. Tom Corbett will attend it’s next “Pennsylvania Natural Gas Summit” on Friday June 14. The summit is set to take place at the Franklin Institute.
Estimates vary over the number of jobs created so far as a result of Marcellus shale gas development. The Pa. Department of Labor and Industry puts the number around
245,000 while a Penn State economist recently pegged the figure closer to 100,000, according to the Philadelphia Inquirer.