HOUSTON, Nov. 1 (Xinhua) -- The oil and natural gas drilling boom will reshape the United States' economic landscape in the next five years, according to a study released Thursday.
Economic benefits from the booming drilling activity has been supporting a surge in sand mining in Wisconsin, turbine manufacturing in the Carolinas and other work far from the drilling hubs, newspaper The Houston Chronicle quoted the study as reporting.
The study by the American Clean Skies Foundation, a non- profit organization, finds that the technology-driven changes in oil and gas production since 2007 will lead to 835,000 to 1.6 million new U.S. jobs by 2017 and increase the country's gross domestic product (GDP) by 167 billion U.S. dollars to 245 billion dollars.
The study also shows the expected employment gains, by sector and state, for each additional increment of natural gas being produced to serve new demands. For example, the report estimates that for every billion cubic feet (Bcf) of additional gas demand per day, there are 13,000 additional direct drilling and pipeline jobs, plus thousands more related to new chemical plants and other gas-using facilities. In turn, these jobs generate a further 10, 000 to 30,000 induced indirect jobs in the manufacturing, retail and service sectors.
The study shows that the economic impact extends far beyond the drilling pad. Jobs are being created in accounting, payroll services, at hotels and restaurants, and for architects, lawyers and engineers
"This report helps us put a face on the large economic stimulus that shale gas production has provided for America," said Gregory C. Staple, CEO of the American Clean Skies Foundation. "It also identifies the 'how' and the 'where' behind the numbers."
"The report gives us considerable confidence that the economic benefits we are seeing today will last well into the next decade given the large available resource base opened up by technological advances and the extensive business plans in place for its production and use," said Harry Vidas, vice president of the Oil and Gas Division at ICF International, which conducted the study for the American Clean Skies Foundation.
The study is the latest to highlight the economic benefits of U. S. domestic oil and gas development. U.S. energy companies are using horizontal drilling and hydraulic fracturing to extract natural gas and oil from dense rock formations, in a change from historic drilling practices that tapped large underground reservoirs.
The hydraulic fracturing technique involves blasting sand, water and chemicals underground to free natural gas and oil trapped in the pores of the rock -- releasing a whole new supply of the hydrocarbons that were previously thought inaccessible.