The energy sector is always in the news for one reason or another—from excess energy consumption, to oil drilling, to renewable resources—the industry touches our lives in many respects. In the past few decades, the United States has invested a significant amount of money and resources to reduce our reliance on foreign oil in an attempt to become energy self-sufficient. Along with the foreign policy incentives of decreased dependence on foreign oil, and the monetary gains of the possibility of exporting our own oil, such progress has created thousands of jobs throughout the country.
Earlier this week, the University of Texas at San Antonio’s Institute for Economic Development published a report highlighting the economic impact of the Eagle Ford Shale region—an oil rich area in southern Texas. The study notes that the region has created over 116,000 jobs, drastically revamping the economy in counties that, just five years ago, faced widespread population losses. In this region, oil production has tripled from 126,000 barrels per day to 352,000 barrels per day in just one year. In fact, the demand for labor has been so high, that some counties are finding it difficult to find people with the right skill sets to match the desired job descriptions. Some of these shortages are being filled through innovative solutions, like training school bus drivers to become truck drivers during their off seasons.
Throughout the country, hundreds of energy firms are creating thousands of jobs that are boosting local economies, like Cunningham Energy in West Virginia. They expect to drill 85,000 square feet in Big Sandy, Elk Districts, and Union District in West Virginia. Jobs in this sector span a wide range of disciplines and skill levels. Some examples of jobs include drilling supervisors, engineers, inventory coordinators, technical writers, chemists, and health and safety advisors among many others.
Source: Businessweek; Image: icpj.net