Alec Krosser: Conclusion

Based on these findings, in terms of economics, natural gas is benefiting the U.S. and is a good long-term solution for its current energy situation. The number of jobs created by hydraulic fracturing is high and continually rising. With an increase in the number of natural gas companies wells drilled, the number of jobs can continue to increase for a while. In addition to the number of jobs, natural gas is more stable than foreign oil from an economic standpoint because the U.S. will not be reliant on foreign nations, particularly OPEC nations, for its energy.
The controversial aspect of only focusing on economics is that hydraulic fracturing still has problems. Some problems not covered include the environmental harm caused by gas extraction methods, and that natural gas is only a temporary solution. All natural gas extraction does is prolong the problem of running out of energy sources. The interview that follows, with Matt Henderson, the Shale Gas Assets Manager of Penn State’s Marcellus Center for Outreach & Research (MCOR), confirm that natural gas is a good short-term alternative, but as a non-renewable resource, it is not a good long-term solution. Current estimates show the U.S. has enough natural gas to last around 92 years, and if the efficiency of natural gas extraction increases significantly in the U.S., possibly 115 years. This amount of time is by no means a permanent solution, so though hydraulic fracturing is currently having many positive economic effects, it will only help the U.S. for finite amount of time.