Oil and Gas Industry is Vital to Ohio

Oil and Gas Industry is Vital to Ohio

March 17, 2021

The United States is the top oil-producing country in the world and a net exporter. This is thanks to the shale boom that revolutionized the industry with a new innovative and safer way to extract oil. To most that might not mean much, but to energy-rich states where so many jobs and so much of the budget is dependent on the industry it means their and their communities’ livelihoods are contingent on the industry’s success.

In an op-ed in The Columbus Dispatch three Ohio commissioners – Jerry Echemann, Belmont County Commissioner, Skip Gardner, Guernsey County Commissioner, and Paul Coffland, Harrison County Commissioner – discuss the importance of the industry to the state.

[A report out of Cleveland State University, commissioned by JobsOhio] showed that from July 2019 to December 2019, the industry invested more than $400 million in Belmont County alone.

Let that sink in, $400 million in one county in just six months. In that same time period the industry invested $206,280,000 in Harrison County and $168,480,000 in Guernsey County. The report also indicates that the industry has provided more than $1 billion to build and repair roads since 2011.

It is important to highlight that Biden’s attacks on the industry will not only take away thousands of jobs in the state but the hundreds of millions in revenue the industry bring in that the state’s budget depends on to go back into the community to pay for schools, infrastructure, hospitals, and more. 

Jack Kleinhenz, a nationally recognized economist, issued a similar report in January 2020, which was commissioned by the Ohio Oil and Gas Energy Education Program. His report showed that in 2018 the industry paid $1.1 billion in taxes and royalties. More than 92% of the taxes and royalties paid by the industry go to local governments and landowners, with the remainder being paid to the state.

The report also showed that Belmont, Carroll, Columbiana, Guernsey, Harrison, Jefferson, Monroe, Noble and Washington counties saw a combined $1.6 billion in labor income in 2018 thanks to the oil and gas industry. Furthermore, as of 2018, the industry was directly responsible for or actively supporting 37,256 Ohio jobs — largely in shale counties.

The numbers don’t lie. If the billions per year in taxes and royalties and labor income don’t speak to this administration, we hope the over 37,000 Ohio energy jobs that depend on the industry do.

The prosperous oil and gas industry is not one that Ohio nor other energy-rich states can afford to lose. We hope the eco-left listens to the constituents being affected by the over-regulation and top-down approach this administration has taken to the industry.