Video: You wanted a jobs plan?

Natural Gas Workers

We can’t wait! That’s the call coming from the President of the United States as he scrambles to figure out the puzzle of why more people can’t find work. Wouldn’t it be great if there were only some working model available to show how lots of people could find new, good paying jobs so he could expand upon that at the national level? If only there were someplace where that was already happening today.

Oh… wait.

The Marcellus Shale Coalition has produced a new video showing that in the state of Pennsylvania it’s been happening for some time. Sitting in the middle of one of the larger deposits of natural gas in the world, (not to mention coal and – formerly – oil) the industry has been ramping up steadily for several years and is bucking a national trend by driving the unemployment rate down. But rather than producing some potentially biased report of their own, this video is simply a compilation of stories which were already reported in both the local and national news. (Though I’m guessing they must not get most of these channels in Washington, D.C. such as Fox and … MSNBC?)

The video is roughly eight minutes in length, but we’ll cover a few of pertinent numbers below.

A summary of the economic impact of this activity is available here, but these numbers should be enough to gain the attention of the We Can’t Wait crowd.

27,000 New Marcellus Hires
There were more than 18,000 new hires (core & ancillary) in 2011 Q2 and 9,000 in 2011 Q1

214,000 Marcellus Related Jobs
Marcellus Employment total in 2011 Q1

$76,036 Average Marcellus Wage
Marcellus Wages – 2010 Q2 to 2011 Q1. This is $29,800 greater than the average of all industries

3,600 Online Job Postings
In August 2011, there were 3,600 (core & ancillary) job postings

2075.9% Increase in Core Jobs – Pennsylvania’s Northern Tier
Jobs added between 2008 Q1 and 2011 Q1

This potential isn’t unique to Pennsylvania. Other states, including New York, are sitting on the same resources but being blocked by bureaucratic red tape. Similar deposits exist in other parts of the country as well, but could use a solid push from Washington to pick up the pace.

To be clear, I’m not talking about subsidies to the natural gas industry here. We don’t need that. If the product isn’t sustainable on its own, then there would be no point in doing it. But it is viable and it’s working today. All that’s really required is to take the more odious regulatory shackles off of the exploration and development process and to stop using this as a political football for the environmental movement.

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