Defending the Natural Gas Industry Is in America’s Best Economic and Energy Interests

Defending the Natural Gas Industry Is in America’s Best Economic and Energy Interests

September 8, 2020

In a recent opinion piece in Penn Live Patriot-News by John Yudichak, an Independent Pennsylvania State Senator, he stresses the negative impacts dismantling America’s prosperous natural gas industry would have on his state and the country as a whole.

It would be bad politics and bad energy policy to capitulate to the demands of extreme environmental interest groups who want to shut down the natural gas industry and tell Pennsylvania building trade union members their jobs do not matter. These same extreme environmental interest groups are pushing Biden to adopt energy policies that require complete elimination of natural gas as a source of electric generation — a policy that would cost millions of jobs, increase all electric bills, and severely weaken America’s economic position in the world.

Not to mention, it would cause power shortages and blackouts due to the unreliability of our electricity grid without natural gas. California’s blackouts serve as the perfect example of the negative impacts removing fossil fuels from the energy mix would have.

Department of Energy spokeswoman Shaylyn Hynes said in a statement, “While the Secretary [Dan Brouillette] has offered this emergency assistance to California in this time of crisis, he also encourages state policymakers to evaluate why the grid is not able to handle extreme stress, which could be alleviated with the support of greater baseload power generation and natural gas supply.”

In 2000, Pennsylvania imported over 75% of its natural gas; today, Pennsylvania is a net exporter of natural gas and has become the second largest producer of natural gas in the nation. The energy sector renaissance in Pennsylvania can transform our economy by creating energy production jobs as well as reenergizing our manufacturing sector.

While America is working on our economic recovery, it is of the utmost importance the natural gas sector is a part of that recovery. The industry supports 10 million jobs nationally and more than 339,000 Pennsylvania jobs. The hydraulic fracturing method has secured America’s energy independence and spot as a net exporter. The industry supports millions of American jobs and brings reliable and affordable energy to households nationwide. Any policy that stands to take away the benefits the industry brings to our country is detached from America’s economic and energy interests.