As lawmakers in Annapolis debate natural gas exploration in Western Maryland, the Maryland Petroleum Council released a study by the Sage Policy Group that examines the potential economic impact of developing the Marcellus Shale to produce natural gas. The report concludes that Marcellus Shale development represents a way for both Allegany and Garrett counties to secure a key driver of business investment and future job creation.
“The Governor can create good paying private sector jobs in a very depressed part of the state,” said Drew Cobbs, Executive Director of the Maryland Petroleum Council. “The oil and natural gas industry can help stimulate the Western Maryland economy and generate local and state tax revenue while benefitting businesses and consumers at no cost to Maryland’s ratepayers or taxpayers.”
The study found that, under a mid-case scenario, 365 wells would be operating over the period of 2016 to 2045, producing 710.1 billion cubic feet of natural gas. At the peak of drilling activity, 1,814 Marylanders will enjoy employment opportunities related to well drilling and maintenance, royalty payments and expanded state and local government spending.