Let’s Develop Our Natural Gas Now While It Is Still Ours

Natural Gas Advocate Vic FurmanVictor Furman
Chenango County, NY, Landowner
Shale Gas Activist

 

All manufacturing is not equal and we’re not going to see a revival of it that actually produces good jobs unless we focus on oil and natural gas, the one bright sector of the economy producing both blue and white-collar employment.

I keep hearing arguments that jobs are returning from foreign countries back to America’s soil but I don’t hear too many people explaining why we’re still falling behind or acknowledging the one thing that is actually working – oil and natural gas development.

Self-serving politicians are always always out there touting their schemes for bringing back those American jobs previously lost to countries such as China, Mexico and Taiwan. Economic recovery, and all those green jobs, are always just around the bend if we’ll be patient, they say.  Our economy will be picking up soon so we don’t need really need all those oil and natural gas jobs, they say.  But is this true?

Looking at the real evidence, and after watching the 60 Minutes segment on the success of robotics in the American job force that is not the way I see it. What are our children going to do for work, as these machines all but have a beating heart?  Who will survive in America as we yield to technology in the name of the almighty dollar?Outside of the health care field where millions will be needed to tend to the needs of us aging baby-boomers, the American workforce often seems to an endangered species.  There is one other industry that is doing well, however, and it is doing very well.  It is the oil and natural gas industry but my state, New York, is, very sadly, ignoring it.

If you watched that 60 Minutes segment, then you now have a sense of what I’m talking about.  President Obama says his administration has resurrected manufacturing in this country.  He claims facilities are returning to American soil in an about-face of what we have seen since the North America Free trade Act (NAFTA) was enacted.

Yet, the job market remains pitiful except for that one one bright spot in oil and gas.  One of the reasons is robots. As stated in the television segment, one robot replaces as many as two and one-half employees and the cost per robot is a mere $3.85 cents an hour.  Unless you’re a robot manufacturer or designer, that doesn’t offer much in the way of employment.  All manufacturing is not equal.

Technology, nonetheless, is a great thing and has allowed us to live longer, while enjoying a enhanced quality of life.  It also creates jobs – different sorts of jobs.  But, as ATM’s have replaced humans, and manufacturers and warehouses replace human workers with robots, we must also realize many more jobs in the United States will soon disappear to technological advancement and we need to replace them.  I don’t know about you but me… I have 11 grandchildren with more on the way the oldest being eleven. What is in store for them? How will they survive when they are not needed, if we don’t change with times and go where opportunity leads us?

While oil and natural gas can’t completely solve this problem, it is a major part of the answer and it’s right there in front of us right now, saving what there this is to this moribund economy.  We should be grabbing it with both hands and pulling it to us.  Unparalleled opportunity is staring us in the face.  Just this week, NPR, for instance, noted a graduate in petroleum engineering can earn $110,000 per year right of college.  Now that’s opportunity!  That’s a real job and it’s an example of technology creating employment, not destroying it.  Technology employed by Cabot Oil & Gas and others that use natural gas to develop natural gas (see the hydraulic fracturing unit below, which is powered by natural gas) is also creating jobs and a cleaner environment.

Natural Gas powered hydraulic fracturing uniot

We see the opportunity across the border in Pennsylvania and other recent studies show oil and natural gas development is making a huge difference throughout the nation adding $1,200 per year to household income, offering the one solid piece of economic news there is to counter all those negatives and those robots.  Additionally, oil and gas is the one sector of the economy where technology is creating both blue and white-collar jobs and at a rapid pace.  Any success in the revival of American manufacturing of the sort we are all seeking isn’t to be found in green jobs or robots but, rather, in the oil and natural gas that is right beneath us.

Yet, we hear a constant parade of comments from the anti-development side to the effect that “we don’t need jobs offered by the drilling industry because America’s economy is on the rebound,” or “what’s the hurry to drill… it’s been down there a million years…lets wait.”  I say this; wait for what?  Until someone else owns my land because I haven’t been able to hold onto it?  Someone like those folks from the NRDC who live off the wealth of their ancestors and want to grab up as much of the Catskills as they can as our upstate economy collapses and land prices decline?  I’m sure they’ll favor natural gas drilling once they own it and they can wait, but the rest of us can’t.  Let’s develop our natural gas now, while it’s still ours.

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8 thoughts on “Let’s Develop Our Natural Gas Now While It Is Still Ours

  1. Excellent article Vic.
    A NY Icon Bauch and Lomb will be pulling it corporate offices not over seas but a short truck trip away to NEW JERSEY!

    Cuomos reply. CORKS! SEND IN THE CORKS! State labor department workers have been sent to help the displaced workers find new jobs.
    FIND JOBS!!!!! SENDING PEOPLE!
    I guess the office of employment is already overwhelmed so additional help is needed? The irony of this, the Real Boom and Bust!
    The BOOM State county workforce! The Bust no tax base to support the State,County, Workforce! Maybe before Bausch & Lomb leaves they can gift Cuomo a pair of trifocals to help see all levels.

    Wednesday, 07 Aug 2013 08:42 AM
    By Newsmax Wires
    Bausch & Lomb’s parent company is cutting 200 jobs in Rochester, N.Y., this week as it moves its headquarters to New Jersey and reduces longstanding operations in the city, officials say.

    In addition to the Bausch & Lomb cuts, Quebec-based drugmaker Valeant is expected to eliminate another 200 jobs in the city by early next year, The Associated Press reported.
    Valeant said last week it planned to cut as much as 15 percent of its workforce overall.

    Bausch & Lomb employs about 1,700 workers at its Rochester headquarters and manufacturing plant. Valeant officials say they’ll keep the manufacturing operations there.

    Gov. Andrew Cuomo said Tuesday state labor department workers have been sent to help the displaced workers find new jobs.

    Bausch & Lomb, one of the world’s best-known makers of contact lenses, was founded in Rochester in 1853.

    The layoffs followed an intense effort by local officials to mitigate the effects of Valeant’s acquisition and downsizing, according to the Democrat and Chronicle.

    Last week, a letter signed by Schumer, U.S. Reps. Louise Slaughter and Dan Maffei, Monroe County Executive Maggie Brooks and Rochester Mayor Thomas Richards urged Valeant to maintain Bausch & Lomb’s manufacturing and research and development workforce in Rochester.
    Bausch & Lomb Cutting 400 NY Jobs, Moving Headquarters to NJ
    Wednesday, 07 Aug 2013 08:42 AM
    By Newsmax Wires
    Bausch & Lomb’s parent company is cutting 200 jobs in Rochester, N.Y., this week as it moves its headquarters to New Jersey and reduces longstanding operations in the city, officials say.

    In addition to the Bausch & Lomb cuts, Quebec-based drugmaker Valeant is expected to eliminate another 200 jobs in the city by early next year, The Associated Press reported.
    Valeant said last week it planned to cut as much as 15 percent of its workforce overall.

    Bausch & Lomb employs about 1,700 workers at its Rochester headquarters and manufacturing plant. Valeant officials say they’ll keep the manufacturing operations there.

    Gov. Andrew Cuomo said Tuesday state labor department workers have been sent to help the displaced workers find new jobs.

    Bausch & Lomb, one of the world’s best-known makers of contact lenses, was founded in Rochester in 1853.

    The layoffs followed an intense effort by local officials to mitigate the effects of Valeant’s acquisition and downsizing, according to the Democrat and Chronicle.

    Last week, a letter signed by Schumer, U.S. Reps. Louise Slaughter and Dan Maffei, Monroe County Executive Maggie Brooks and Rochester Mayor Thomas Richards urged Valeant to maintain Bausch & Lomb’s manufacturing and research and development workforce in Rochester.

  2. Vic: Great post and very insightful. Cuomo is committing political suicide between the gas and the UNSAFE Act and he doesn’t even realize it. If he is foolish enough to run for POTUS he will find out like his daddy Mario did that Manhattan stops at the border of Manhattan.

  3. Good article Vic.

    Want some more to be concerned about? Employment in the US has been flat for the past decade or so along with stagnant household income. High tech jobs are doing well (think petroleum engineer) and low skill jobs that are not amenable to automation. Suggested by an article in MIT Technology Review… “Employment trends have polarized the workforce and hollowed out the middle class.”

    http://www.technologyreview.com/featuredstory/515926/how-technology-is-destroying-jobs/

    So thank you Governor Cuomo for not having a clue about how modern economies function. I’ll guarantee you though, that the poor souls forced to flee the Southern Tier will not be beating a path to The Garden State. Rather, they may head south, perhaps to nearby Pennsylvania but likely a lot further away.

  4. A liitle while ago Bill Huston, camera man and self proclaimed tree hugger from shaleshock media, “an anti drilling propaganda machine” celebrated the missed deadline from Dr. Shaw on the health review, the last delay by the Cuomo administration with this simple utterance “Yeah…..Yeah….. we won.” I don’t want to sound judgmental, but I know I am so much better then Bill as an environmentalist and a person here is why. As a property owner I don’t hug trees and proclaim to hear a tree cry when I cut one down…I plant them… hundreds of them…. over a lifetime thousands. Not just on my land but on state lands and county lands ever since I was a Boy Scout in Troop 10 where Richard Sprout Sr. was my scout master I have participated in river bank clean ups, tree planting expeditions, trash collection along rural routes.

    I am a better person then Bill because I never denied my use of the earth resources to improve my life. I admit to buying bottle water knowing that without gas the plastic bottle wouldn’t be. When i drive my car too a meeting any meeting, I know i got there on the use of fossil fuels and readily admitt that if I drove a Prius…. it was still powered by fossil fuels…. when charging the very non earth friendly battieries that stored the energy. I know I am a better person then Bill because I do not lie like bill does to get people to follow me and my ideals.Take a look at this post Bill Huston blogged in the newspaper today

    http://williamahuston.blogspot.com/2013/03/fracking-is-golden-opportunity-to-die.html

    Frightening is it not.

    Bill Huston the list… Your list…. is a lie… “fracking killed no one” nor did drilling a gas well… but even if it did “Really”

    If there were room on this site I would put up a list of dead that is 100 percent verifiable, it would include the names of 13 men and women from the USS-COLE bombed while refueling in the port of Yemen, The 33 who lost limbs and vision, My list would continue by including the 6886 American soldiers in Iraq who’s blood was spilled protecting America’s oil interest, Then we would list the 3,274 killed in Afghanistan and the many many that were wounded losing vision and limbs. Saying that those troops are not dying for Americas oil because Afghanistan does not produce it Bill would be a mis representation from you yet once again., They may not drill oil but the pipeline that crosses their country to bring oil to the USA is why we are there.

    I got news for Bill, for Walter Hang, for you too Sandra Stiengrabber, your delays are not victories to celebrate. Everytime you delay drilling with your lies and very laughable list of the harm, Another American Soldier is put in harms way and you don’t care. Hell your side even bragged about burning their draft cards and running to Canada during Viet Nam. Wether we belonged that war or not is not the issue, The issue is during the protest of War in Nam in the sixties, those who failed to answer the call of duty to their country ultimately sent another in their place, because the requisition of American forces had to be filled and were. How many of American sons died in place of those cowards who ran from the call using Consciensious objecter as their excuse. Too many Bill… even one was too many.Your anti American idealisim efforts do not reflect “Victory” when you get a delay but rather reflect defeatism. Again you don’t care because you would be the first to go to a recruiting station and throw blood on a recruiter as you flee to Canada like the coward you and your kind are.

    I ask everybody that reads this response I have written here to do take a page from Bill Huston and do this…. Sit, chair or floor don’t matter, Close your eyes and put your hands on your knee’s Take a deep breath, clear your mind of all thoughts but this one. “picture sand as far as you can see, the Sun blazing hot beating down upon you and un relentless, The only sound you here are the oil pumps working off in the distance. Exhale slowly, then Inhale deeply and think about a uniformed American Soldier dressed in Battle fatigues carrying an M-16 at port arms. envision that soldier as your child.

    Now, exhale slowly and hum ohhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhmmmmmmmmmmmmm
    repeat several times
    ohhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhmmmmmmmmmmmmm

    Now, envision as this exercise comes to an end,
    a casket, many caskets draped in American flags,
    touching down at your hometown airport
    ohhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhmmmmmmmmmmmmm

    This is the true list of the dead. They are dead not because of the science of drilling, but they have been killed needlessly so that Bill Huston, Walter Hang, Matt Ryan, and Sandra Stiengraber may enjoy all the benefits of foreign fuel not paying the cost with their blood, but with the blood of American Military volunteers who answered the call from their President to trade their blood for that oil….

    We have our own. We are way past due as a state and as Americans to fulfill our demands with domestic energy. By doing so…. we therefore fulfill that saying by the mother and wife of a soldier from NY that read:

    Drilling a Gas Well – And Keep our Soldiers Home!

  5. How many people are killed each and every year by medical accidents. I’ve heard estimates (by no less than the AMA) of upwards of 300,000…annually! Is anyone calling for a moratorium on hospitals? With that documented fatality record, shouldn’t we close them all down? No. Why? Because we have no choice, and because collectively, we have decided that it is still an acceptable risk. Yet we have the crazies making lists of people that died of fracking… completely undocumentable. The domestic oil and gas industry provides, as others have pointed out, a very substantial shot in the arm to our economic recovery, providing good paying white collar and blue collar jobs, and these jobs provide a substantial beneficial ripple effect in and around the communities where production is taking place. And with proper oversight, as opposed to a complete shut-down, the few incidents and accidents that do happen are an acceptable risk.

    • Bill Huston’s list is a lie Tom… It is made up. Not true. just like most of Bills documentaries and self science Bill himself lives in the hole that Alice fell down, The list of the Harm is a stage prop. an Idea that came out of a Stiengrabber brain storming meeting, Just like the infamous brown water jug, it is a concoction of a hippycrite mind.

      • Vic: I agree with most of what you said except for one thing: you assume Steingraber is thinking instead of reacting. On a side note, anyone reading this post is invited to a love – in for the anti’s on Sept. 23 at 6:30 in Homer, NY. Details are in this link: https://www.facebook.com/events/1811889958951713/ Craig “brown jug” Stevens will be there as well. What the hell is a resident of Silver Lake, Pa doing at a meeting in Homer, NY to try and get a NY pipeline blocked??? That is just one question that I plan on asking Stevens. Tom: spread the word on this meeting if you can. Thanks

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