Tri-State Shale Coalition Intelligence Report Highlights Shale Gas-Related Economic Development

by on January 22, 2018

Abundant natural gas from the Marcellus and Utica shale formations in northeast Ohio, southwestern Pennsylvania and the West Virginia panhandle has opened the door for opportunity to walk through.  Multi-billion dollar oil and gas-driven industrial development has done just that, and there’s room for lots more.

Stacked opportunities in this tri-state footprint uniquely offer flexibility and economies of scale for site prep, drilling, storage and logistics, and have it on course for realizing its full potential as a new global petrochemical hub, not in the U.S. Gulf, but – for the first-time ever – in the U.S. Northeast.  What are these three states unprecedentedly doing as one region of economic opportunity and what’s its competitive advantage and future forecast? Read all about in the premier Tri-State Shale Coalition Intelligence Report from Conway Data Inc., publisher of Site Selection magazine. 

 Here’s a snapshot of what experts and business leaders in the space are saying – including large integrated chemical manufacturers and dedicated chemical makers – about the value in an ethane storage and trading hub and its critical need in maximizing the tri-state region’s natural gas resources:


“It’s much easier and cheaper [to build out the chemicals sector in the Appalachian Basin], and the Gulf Coast can then take existing capacity to have deep penetration into the export markets around the world.  Even those that have been expanding in the Gulf are all on board.  The polymer processors and blenders who get all their polyethylene resin from the coast are salivating [considering recovery from the 2017 hurricane season],” says Brian Anderson, Ph.D., director of the WVU Energy Institute.


“Elliott is one of a handful of companies that can provide large-scale refrigeration compression.  The [Shell cracker] order validates Elliott’s superior technology and expertise in olefins production on a global scale,” says Elliott Group COO Michael Lordi.


“The $6-billion Shell ethane cracker in Beaver County is being constructed on a 1,200-acre redevelopment of a smelter site.  Sites like these and the decommissioned power plant sites are loaded with infrastructure:  transmission infrastructure, railroad lines and river access,” says Pennsylvania Department of Community and Economic Development Senior Energy Advisor Denise Brinley.


“Drive in southeast Ohio and your see new roofs.  Go to a tiny little restaurant and your immediately notice a new washroom and new tables.  They’re refurbishing local service businesses.  You see advertisements from supply chain businesses serving oil and gas companies.  It’s not like you need to look in a database or directory.  You can just drive the road and see it,” says Iryna Lendel, Ph.D., director, Center for Economic Development, Maxine Goodman Levin College of Urban Affairs, Cleveland State University. 

Additionally, in light of the U.S. opioid crisis, “[Companies] are amenable to unionized labor because that is opioid-free labor; people show up on time, and they can call on a large quantity of special occupations they may need,” notes Lendel.


Read the report for an overview of the Marcellus and Utica shale-driven developments and business opportunities in a tri-state footprint comprising northeast Ohio, southwestern Pennsylvania and the West Virginia panhandle that’s on the fast track to becoming a new Northeast U.S. petrochemical hub.