Via Bloomberg comes this story about the positive effects of fracking on the economy:
In 2012, the energy boom supported 2.1 million jobs, added almost $75 billion in federal and state revenues, contributed $283 billion to the gross domestic product and lifted household income by more than $1,200, according to the report released today from IHS CERA. The competitive advantage for U.S. manufacturers from lower fuel prices will raise industrial production by 3.5 percent by the end of the decade, said the report from CERA, which provides business advice for energy companies....
Lower costs are also driving investment in energy-related chemical industries, where more than $31 billion will add more than 16 million tons of chemical, plastics and related manufacturing facilities by 2016.
“The unconventional oil and gas revolution is not only an energy story, it is also a very big economic story,” Daniel Yergin, IHS vice chairman and author of The Quest: Energy, Security and the Remaking of the Modern World, said in a statement. “The growth of long-term, low-cost energy supplies is benefiting households and helping to revitalize U.S. manufacturing, creating a competitive advantage for U.S. industry and for the United Statesitself.”
As Reason's science correspondent, Ronald Bailey, has noted, "environmentalists were for fracking before they were against it." Hard-core greens such as Robert Kennedy Jr. called it "an obvious bridge fuel" to a new age of cleaner energy.
But that was then. Given the unambiguous atmospheric benefits of fracking - it produces far fewer greenhouse gases than coal or traditional petroleum products - and the big savings it's producing across the economy, expect the attacks on it to become more heated and vitriolic. Because the only thing many environmentalists hate more than a cheaper, cleaner potential energy source is an actualized one.
Watch Bailey and me discuss "The Truth About Fracking" in this Reason.tv video: