Utica Shale Fracking Surge Not a Boon to Employment in Ohio

Ohio Utica Shale Region Monitor (dated March 2013)
Cleveland State University, Maxine Goodman Levin College of Urban Affairs

[From Executive Summary] …While there is a clear positive trend in sales receipts, the employment data show very modest increases for the strong shale counties between 2011 and 2012. Furthermore, these modest increases instrong shale counties (1.4%) are similar to those experienced by moderate (1.4%) and non-shale counties (1.3%)…

[Reuters] … state employment data, academic research and a week-long tour of half a dozen factories in Ohio suggests the shale gas revolution has been a disappointment when it comes to job creation.

“The industries benefiting are more capital intensive than labor intensive,” said Tom Waltermire, the chief executive of Team NEO, the economic development agency for northeast Ohio.

“Even a manufacturing renaissance won’t require the same headcount per unit of output as we had 20 or 30 years ago. If it did require that, the renaissance would never happen.”

In March, a study by Cleveland State University concluded that while gas exploration had unleashed a surge in economic activity in Ohio, job growth – even in counties directly affected by the drilling – was stagnant. The employment growth that many assumed would follow the energy investment was “not yet evident,” the study’s authors said…


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