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This site is the inspiration of a former reporter/photographer for one of New England's largest daily newspapers and for various magazines. The intent is to direct readers to interesting political articles, and we urge you to visit the source sites. Any comments may be noted on site or directed to KarisChaf at gmail.

Thursday, January 30, 2014

Not ‘hope and change,’ but real jobs in oil patch -- By William C. Triplett II, The Washington Times

Illustration by Linas Garsys/The Washington Times (Illustration by Linas Garsys, The Washington Times)

Employment booming in the energy sector

As a whole, America's job numbers are appalling. At least 12.6 million people have dropped out of the work force. Millions of Americans who had a job when George W. Bush was president don't have one now. Future job prospects look abysmal, clear across the demographics — men, women, teens, minorities, recent graduates and seniors.

Twenty percent of the American population is on food stamps, and there is no answer in sight for the country's misery, except the American shale revolution.

In his State of the Union address on Tuesday, in passing, President Obama took undeserved credit for increased American oil and gas production before he returned to his usual liberal agenda of government programs, including raising the minimum wage.

What Mr. Obama didn't tell the American people is this: The oil patch is hiring right now, and the jobs offered pay much better than the federal minimum wage.

Three factors are driving this: First, there is what the International Energy Agency in Paris calls the "relentless rise" of American oil production. Since the American shale revolution began a few years ago, the energy-sector forecasters have had to revise their estimates repeatedly and always upward. American natural-gas production numbers are also running at record levels.

Second, there is a generational shift going on inside the oil and gas industry. Employment ramped up in the early 1980s, but with oil prices stagnant thereafter, the industry wasn't an attractive career clear through the mid-2000s. As a result, there is a bulge of people in the oil and gas industry that is retiring, leaving the companies scrambling to replace them.

Third, there are new kinds of jobs, especially environment-related, in the oil and gas industry that didn't exist 30 years ago, as well as new ways of using the surplus oil and gas production. For example, they are working on new technologies to use natural gas to power locomotives and ships.

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