Louisiana’s Oil and Gas Industry Struggles to Recover Under A Biden Administration

Louisiana’s Oil and Gas Industry Struggles to Recover Under A Biden Administration

April 15, 2021

Louisiana’s oil and gas industry is still struggling to recover from the hit they took during the COVID-19 pandemic, that caused 7,500 energy works to be laid off. The Biden administration is doing the state’s oil and gas industry no favors and making it even harder on them to bounce back. 

The New Orleans City Business reports:

The high-paying jobs have not come back yet even though world oil prices have rebounded to pre-pandemic levels. And as President Joe Biden pushes to accelerate a shift to renewable energy sources, oil and gas workers from Lafayette to Houma are feeling increasingly uneasy about the future.

Loren Scott, an economist who does consulting work for the industry, said Louisiana has about 27,000 jobs in oil and gas extraction, or 7,500 fewer than in January 2020. That number reflects those working in oil and gas exploration and production.

The COVID-19 pandemic rocked the oil and gas industry. As consumer demand fell oil prices plummeted with it, causing rigs in production and drilling permits to trend town too.

Even with the rebound in crude oil prices over the last few months, the south Louisiana oil patch remains “one of the few sectors of the economy that did not show any improvement” in jobs, Scott said.

Gary Wagner, an economics professor at the University of Louisiana at Lafayette, said that an array of businesses that support the oil and gas industry also have lost jobs, and adding these in brings the total job losses to at least 24,000 since the peak in 2014.

President Biden continues to deal blow after blow to the industry as it struggles to bounce back. Last month, the Biden administration canceled a lease sale in the Gulf after it declared a temporary moratorium on selling new leases on federal lands and water while it conducts a comprehensive review of energy and environmental policies.

With no end date in sight to this ban, energy workers are fearful of the industry’s future. Energy-rich communities like those in Louisiana have displaced workers who lost their livelihoods with no equal high-paying jobs as an alternative. Biden’s top-down blanket approach to the energy sector is not the right way to regulate energy policy across the whole country and will continue to hurt average Americans in the process.