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Despite overregulation, Western US E&P industry making significant economic contributions

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Western E&P sector provides $14.5 billion in wages to working families, and over $13 billion in taxes annually

DENVER – According to updated economic data, the western oil and natural gas exploration and production (E&P) industry supports 177,058 jobs across the United States and remains a major economic contributor with $49.2 billion in annual economic activity, says an industry association.

“The E&P industry has faced many regulatory challenges and tough market conditions since the last economic analysis was released, and jobs in the industry are down as a result,” said Kathleen Sgamma, vice president of government and public affairs for Western Energy Alliance.

The Western Oil and Natural Gas Employs America: 2016 economic model developed by John Dunham & Associates shows the current impact of the western E&P industry in every state, county and congressional district across the country.

The model does not include midstream and downstream activities. While market conditions, along with additional federal regulations, have slowed the growth of development, oil and natural gas production is up by 20 per cent since the study was last conducted in 2014, says Sgamma.

The western E&P sector provides $14.5 billion in wages to working families across the country and over $13 billion in taxes annually, making it an important source of revenue to local, state and federal governments.

“While President Obama claims credit for increased oil and natural gas production in America, the reality is that federal policies have slowed recovery and resulted in the collapse of royalties from federal lands by 55 per cent,” she said.

“Meanwhile, oil and natural gas royalties from private lands remain buoyant, with only a 4 per cent decrease. The effects of misguided federal policy continue to be sharply reflected in the numbers.”

The model quantifies the impact from just the oil and natural gas E&P sector in the western states of Arizona, Colorado, Idaho, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Mexico, North Dakota, Oregon, South Dakota, Utah, Washington and Wyoming. Although the energy is produced from the West, the economic impact is across the entire nation.

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