Fracking for oil and natural gas in Pennsylvania is creating a significant amount of economic stimulus for the state in the form of new jobs and funding that will help pay for infrastructure, according to the Pennsylvania Business Daily.
And while there is some resistance from activists, Pennsylvania communities are becoming more open to drilling in the state, according to the Pennsylvania Independent Oil and Natural Gas Association Director of Public Outreach, Dan Weaver.
The broader acceptance is a relatively new occurrence, Weaver said.
“Four or five years ago, everyone was using scare tactics, saying that there was going to be mass, widespread devastation and everything was going to just go downhill. We’re four or five years later, and there is no mass, widespread devastation,” Weaver said.
While devastation has not found its way to the area, employment opportunities have: the drilling is creating thousands of good jobs in the state, the Pennsylvania Business Daily said. More than 220,000 jobs have been created in the state, with salaries that average more than $40,000 above the state average, Weaver told Rigzone.
Funds totaling more than $630 million have been given to the state, benefitting a number of Pennsylvania communities in all counties of the state, according to the Pennsylvania Business Daily.
The situation in Pennsylvania contrasts with neighboring New York, where the Court of Appeals last summer upheld lower court rulings giving municipalities the right to use zoning laws to ban fracking within the city boundaries of Middleton and Dryden in central New York State. The Marcellus and the Utica lie under portions of Pennsylvania and New York.
“We don’t foresee the ban on fracking in New York ending anytime soon,” Weaver said, adding that Pennsylvania was quite satisfied with the economic stimulus that was provided by extraction activity in the state.
It is well known within the economic community that oil and gas jobs not only result in funds for the communities where drilling activity occurs, but they also provide a significant amount of economic stimulus through job creation, using the multiplier effect, said Weaver.
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