As I’m learning about natural gas, I’ve come to the understanding that it has the ability to power many different things. In fact, natural gas serves as an industrial energy source in manufacturing products ranging from steel, and paper to glass and clothing. Not to mention, it is the raw material for fertilizer, plastics, paints antifreeze, dyes, film, medicines and more.
Over the last two years, manufacturers have announced plans to add 10 million metric tons of ethylene capacity in the United States by 2019. Those plans represent a 10 percent increase in global ethylene production and also account for close to half the industry’s planned expansions in all countries.
According to a recent report from the Boston Consulting Group, lower natural gas prices are attractive to these industries because natural gas accounts for much of the cost in producing synthetic textiles, paper and primary metals. The low price of natural gas allows these industries to increase production margins.
In November, The International Energy Agency (IEA) similarly noted that the rise in natural gas production would “likely lead manufacturing jobs to move to the United States and away from Europe and Asia.” In addition, due to natural gas, PricewaterhouseCoopers reports that manufacturers could employ about 1 million more workers by 2025 thanks to projects being built here in America.
Abundant, affordable and domestic natural gas is creating more jobs, reviving struggling industries and is developing small towns across the United States. That means greater prosperity for us all. Who can argue with that?