Natural Gas-only Jobs Study Finds Economic Impact of Industry Nearly $385 Billion in 2008

September 2009 Vol. 236 No. 9

Nearly three million Americans work in jobs supported by the natural gas industry, providing a significant impact to the U.S. economy, according to a new study released Sept. 17 by IHS Global Insight.

The Contributions of the Natural Gas Industry to the U.S. National and State Economies,” the first-ever study to measure the impact of the natural gas industry on the U.S. economy separate from that of the oil industry, found that the industry contributed $385 billion to the economy in 2008 and over $180 billion in labor income alone.

“The influence of the natural gas industry on the economy is spread throughout the continental United States,” IHS Global said in the report commissioned by America’s Natural Gas Alliance (ANGA). “In 2008, more than 30 states had at least 10,000 direct, indirect, and induced jobs related to natural gas.”

“Clean, abundant natural gas is critical to America’s economy,” said ANGA Board Chairman David Trice. “As Congress seeks solutions to climate change and energy security, it is critical to further incentivize the use of natural gas – a low-emission fuel source of which the U.S. has a 100-year supply – to help carry America into a new, green, energy independent future.”

Key findings from the IHS Global study include:

  • Total Natural Gas Employment Was Nearly 3 Million in 2008: 2.8 million jobs were attributable to the natural gas industry, including more than 622,000 jobs directly in the industry, and another 2.2 million jobs that were either indirectly related or induced by the industry’s economic impact.
  • Natural Gas has a Significant Impact on the U.S. Economy: In 2008, the total value added contribution by natural gas to the U.S. economy reached $385 billion, including $180 billion in labor income alone.
  • Natural Gas Jobs Increased 17% From 2006-08: Direct employment rose by more than 100,000 jobs, while total employment increased by more than 400,000 jobs.
  • Contributions of Natural Gas Are Spread Across the Country: All continental states have natural gas-related jobs, and more than 30 states had at least 10,000 jobs related to the natural gas industry.

In comparison, there are a total of 127,246 renewable power generation jobs in the U.S., a Global Insight report for the U.S. Conference of Mayors found (October 2008). According to the National Mining Association, the coal industry has 122,930 direct jobs and supports 555,650 jobs (February 2009 report discussing economics of mining in 2007). Finally, there are 100,000 nuclear jobs in the country, according to the Clean and Safe Energy Coalition (www.cleansafeenergy.org).

View a copy of this report online or contact the ANGA media team at info@anga.us or (202) 944-1920 for more information.

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