Wednesday, August 03, 2011

Natural Gas Production is Booming, So is Demand for Shale Sand; Drill, Drill, Drill = Jobs, Jobs, Jobs

The EIA released data yesterday on U.S. natural gas production and reported that 2,414,685 million cubic feet of natural gas was produced in May, second only to the all-time monthly record set in March of 2,422,763 million cubic feet.  On a three-month moving average basis to smooth out variability, the three-month average for March-May was the highest natural gas production on record (see chart above).

As a follow-up to yesterday's post about how the shale gas boom has boosted the demand for steel tubes and brought new life, investment and 400 jobs to Youngstown, Ohio comes this story today from National Public Radio "Natural Gas Extraction Creates A Boom For Sand":

"The rise of fracking as a method for extracting natural gas from shale rock has triggered demand for a key ingredient in the process: silica sand. In parts of the upper Midwest, there's been a rush to mine this increasingly valuable product.

Sandstone deposits are plentiful and accessible across the upper Midwest and in Texas and Oklahoma. Dozens of companies are ramping up production and expanding their mines and quarries to meet the huge demand.

At the Pattison Sand Co. in Iowa, business has been booming. Over the past 6 months, the company has hired 50 workers. To meet fracking demand, it's running 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, all year long."

Bottom Line: The "natural gas revolution" is not only creating thousands of new U.S. jobs directly involved with the exploration, drilling and extraction of shale gas, but it's also creating thousands of new jobs in the domestic industries that support shale gas production, like steel tubes and shale sand, to highlight just a few.  


At 8/03/2011 1:05 PM, Blogger Benjamin Cole said...

There is already a used-car dealer in Oklahoma ( who will sell you a used CNG truck off the lot for $10k or less.

I have no connection to this Okie, he could be gold or a crook, I don't know.

But the point is, we can switch to CNG w/o too much bother. There are already CNG stations in Los Angeles.

Going to CNG is a lot cheaper than building aircrap carriers, and brings a lot more money home, too.

Drill, baby, drill--for natural gas.

At 8/03/2011 4:13 PM, Blogger juandos said...

The potential of the oil extracted from all these site apparently has a rosier picture now than it did before...

The following Technology Review link was found on Instapundit's site: New Process Could Make Canadian Oil Cheaper, Cleaner

A method for getting oil out of tarry sands could reduce the costs and lower the greenhouse-gas emissions associated with its extraction...

At 8/03/2011 4:35 PM, Blogger Benjamin Cole said...


Maybe they even find gas in East St. Louis!

At 8/03/2011 6:56 PM, Blogger Craig Howard said...

How long before we hear the wailing that shale sand is a finite resource and must be conserved?

At 8/04/2011 12:54 PM, Blogger Dan Ferris said...

Craig, you're right to ask that, even though it seems absurd. That's the one thing that can really hang this whole shale revolution up. I have this nightmare that it'll be like in Atlas Shrugged when Dagny says, "Did you hear? They killed Colorado."

At 8/07/2011 7:10 AM, Blogger VangelV said...

Once again, where are the profits? How long do you think that producers can continue to operate by selling gas at under their production cost?


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