President Obama has underscored the urgency of revitalizing our nation's manufacturing base, especially in regions like ours where this sector — and the communities it supports — have struggled for far too long. As we know, our region's workforce is second to none. Now — driven by tightly regulated shale development — a brighter, more promising future is within reach.
We are very pleased that's the message that Obama once again delivered during his recent visit to our region. As the president stated, shale has “changed the paradigm of manufacturing,” adding: “It's cheaper to manufacture in the United States than it is in Europe and/or in Asia.”
Consumers, struggling with sluggish employment opportunities, are benefiting too. “We produce more natural gas than anyone — and nearly everyone's energy bill is lower because of it,” the president has stated.
He's absolutely right, and as the Obama administration has made clear, safe shale production “has contributed in large measure to a reduction in CO2 emissions,” which are now at a 20-year low. At the same time, shale is generating huge amounts of impact fees and tax revenues for local economies across Pennsylvania.
We are encouraged by the president's strong support of American natural gas, which is boosting our economy, protecting our environment and strengthening our national security.
The writer is president of the Marcellus Shale Coalition (marcelluscoalition.org).
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