On December 21, 2012, John Hanger, former Pennsylvania Secretary of the Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) headlined a report on his “John Hanger’s Facts of the Day” blog .
“IHS Global Insight finds that shale gas development has created 103,000 jobs in Pennsylvania. The Commonwealth ranks second in shale gas jobs, behind Texas, according to the IHS new report that was funded in part by the oil and gas industry.
There is continuing controversy about the number of jobs created by shale gas development in Pennsylvania, with estimates ranging from less than 20,000 to as much as 240,000. I will be curious to see how the IHS analysis weathers likely critiques.”
Hanger’s blog post does questions the accuracy of the IHA Global Insight’s report.
A couple of days ago, I received an anonymous request to check out IHS Global Insight and this particular report.
IHS Global Insights describes itself as: With a tradition of excellence and a diversity of suppliers, employees and customers, IHS is the leading provider of diverse global market and economic information.
One of IHS’s divisions is IHS Cambridge Energy Research Associate (IHS CERA). IHS CERA provides:
- Advisory service membership
- Industry forums
- Multiclient studies
- Analytics and forecasting
- Coal reports and publications
IHS CERA is also listed as an affiliate member of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) Energy Initiative program. (See: MIT Joint Frackademia )
IHS has produced 4 reports from 2009-2012 dealing with the economic benefits of Natural Gas Drilling.
- 2009: Measuring the Economic and Energy Impacts of Proposals to Regulate Hydraulic Fracturing – Task 1 Report. Prepared for the American Petroleum Institute (API)
- April 2011: The Economic Contribution of the Onshore Independent Oil and Natural Gas Producers to the U.S. Economy – Final Report. Prepared for the Independent Petroleum Association of America (IPAA)
- December 2011: The Economic and Employment Contributions of Shale Gas in the United States. Prepared for the American Natural Gas Alliance (ANGA)
- October 2012: America’s New Energy Future: The Unconventional Oil and Gas Revolution and the US Economy – Volume 1:National Economic Contributions. Supported by American Petroleum Institute, Institute for 21st Century Energy, the American Chemistry Council, and Natural Gas Supply Association.
All reports are similar in that they tout how great the Natural Gas Industry is for the economy, and how many jobs will be created. Read one report and you’ve read them all. Gee, almost like cloning.
IPAA’s Public Relations Campaign – Energy-in-Depth (EID) features the April 2011 report on their website. The Marcellus Shale Coalition (MSC) has the October 2012 report available for download.
ANGA issued a press release about the 2011 report but failed to mention the report was prepared for ANGA. Similarly, the American Chemistry Committee (ACC) touts the 2012 report in a press release and forgot to mention their “support” of the report.
This is where we get into the Game of Clones. We have a report prepared by a private corporation for a special interest group. The special interest group issues a press release about the report and cites the private corporation while omitting who paid for the report.
The public, in general, and sadly many journalists, rarely look beyond the press release. Hanger, in his blog post, gives a link to a newspaper article; did he actually read the report? Did he notice who “supported” the report?
It goes further than self-validation cloning by pointing to one another. These reports (or at least a press release about reports) go to legislators, who in turn issue their own press releases about the report. The legislator’s press release is then pointed out by the special interest as further validation.
Rep. Fred Upton (R-MI) issued such a press release in October 2012. Upton is Chairman of the House Energy & Commerce Committee.
Upton has his own connections to Natural Gas Interests. His cousin is Katie McClendon, wife of Aubrey McClendon, CEO of Chesapeake Energy.
Exerpt from Politico article (emphasis added): Fred Upton finds it’s good to be the chairman.
Chesapeake Energy spokesman Michael Kehs said the natural gas giant’s $20,000 contributions for the 2012 cycle — beyond the $9,800 given in 2010 or $5,000 in 2008 — stem in part from Upton’s primary challenge.
“We don’t believe in everything he professes, but we think he’s doing an excellent job trying to balance the broad interests of our nation’s energy policies,” Kehs said. “We think that’s certainly a laudable goal.”
Kehs also gave another reason for backing Upton: Chesapeake CEO Aubrey McClendon’s wife, Katie, is the chairman’s first cousin. “When a family member is a member of Congress, we tend to give them our full support,” Kehs said.
Funny how “DOTS” connect.
The December 2011 report was prepared for ANGA. One of the co-founders of ANGA was Aubrey McClendon. See Steve Horn’s December 2012 article: ANGA Lobbyist Spins Through Revolving Door To Work For Fred Upton
Let’s take a look at the people who prepared the reports. The chart below is sorted by date of the report. Notice anything….ummmm…. similar?
Essentially the 2011 and 2012 reports were written by the same people. We don’t know who wrote the 2009 reports because there are no names on it.
In January of 2012, Jannette M. Barth, Ph.D. issued Comments on IHS Global Insight study, “The Economic and Employment Contributions of Shale Gas in the United State,” December 2011.
I suggest you read the December 2011 report as prepared by IHS, then read Jannette Barth’s comments. Next read the 2012 report and see if any of the omissions and errors mentioned by Barth were corrected.
UPDATE: 12-30-2012 5:15pm
“The word in the world of independents is that the shale plays are just giant Ponzi schemes and the economics just do not work,” an analyst from IHS Drilling Data, an energy research company, wrote in an e-mail on Aug. 28, 2009.
Gee, doesn’t IHS read it’s own reports?
(C) 2012 by Dory Hippauf