The U.S. has surpassed Russia and Saudi Arabia as the world’s top oil and natural gas producer — an accomplishment important not only to America’s foreign policy but also to the father and mother in Steubenville, Ohio, working to provide for their family. 

America’s energy abundance has positively transformed our country’s energy outlook by delivering shared economic, environmental and security benefits for all. Consumers, from families to manufacturers, continue to be the clear winners.

Over the span of 2008 to 2018, natural gas end-users, which include American households, businesses, manufacturers and electric power generators, have realized an incredible $1.1 trillion in savings, according to a recently released economic analysis. The savings on natural gas directly impacts nearly all goods and services. When allocating the entire $1.1 trillion savings over the past 10 years from every sector to each household in America, the yield is approximately $9,000 of savings per household. 

Just as the savings tied to domestic natural gas can give families added spending power, shale developmentis a shot in the arm for manufacturing and for good-paying, family-sustaining jobs critical for a thriving middle class.

These savings, enjoyed by consumers coast-to-coast, are made possible in large part by the natural resources found in the heart of Appalachia. Since the 1970s, this region has witnessed a mass exodus of manufacturing jobs. Once known as the nation’s manufacturing hub, the region was tagged with the “rust belt” moniker.

Natural gas is the fuel of manufacturing and America’s historic decline in manufacturing was significantly impacted by the nation’s decline in natural gas fuel supply. Today, America has an abundance of natural gas largely because of the development of the Marcellus and Utica Shale formations in Ohio, West Virginia and Pennsylvania. From 2008 to 2018, 85 percent of all natural gas growth in the U.S. has come from the above three states.

The three states combined now produce more natural gas than Texas. If Ohio, West Virginia and Pennsylvania were a country they would be the world’s third-largest natural gas producer, behind only the U.S. and Russia. That is why we’ve given this region a new moniker: “Shale Crescent USA.”

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So why has leasing all but stopped in this region??

IMO, there are several reasons why activity is so low right now....

The wild west days of leasing are over, and the players have enough acreage to develop without new leaseholds.

Producers are now developing that leased acreage with the best chance of a decent ROI.

NG price is very low, and the consensus is that we will remain in this low price environment for the (hopefully only) near future. 

This is a maybe, but almost all the Democratic 2020 candidates for President are all in on renewables (foolishly so), thereby anti-NG, so there may be a bit of hesitancy until the election is settled.

Four more years of Trump may loosen things up a bit. Time will tell.


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