Shale Gas: Still a boon to US manufacturing?

December 2014
Shale Gas: Still a boon to US manufacturing?

At a glance

US shale gas development continues to mature rapidly. Its momentous growth is not only altering the country’s energy mix, and impacting global energy markets. It’s also giving US manufacturing a boost through significant cost savings and job creation, according to a PwC analysis.

Shale gas activity in the US has taken root in the last several years, and its effects on the country’s energy mix and energy independence have progressed beyond prognostication and shaped new realities. The ‘shale effect’ on manufacturing, too, is taking shape—making the US a more attractive locale due to relatively low energy and feedstock costs. The most likely beneficiaries in a scenario of continued low natural gas prices and high yields include energy-intensive manufacturing sectors such as metals, as well as those sectors—most notably chemicals and petrochemicals—which use natural gas as a feedstock.

According to a new analysis by PwC, shale gas development could have the following impacts on US manufacturing overall:

  • Annual cost savings of $22.3 billion in 2030 and $34.1 billion in 2040.
  • 930,000 shale gas-driven manufacturing jobs created by 2030 and 1.41 million by 2040.

This report takes a look at what shale gas has meant for US manufacturing--and what may lie on the horizon.