October 23, 2017

Ohio’s Positive Transition to Natural Gas

The energy market in Ohio has changed dramatically over the last 25 years, and it’s been trending more and more towards natural gas, away from coal. In 1992, most of the energy in Ohio came from coal sources, with natural gas as an afterthought. This led to inconsistent energy prices in the state, with some communities paying much more than others. This changed progressively throughout the 1990s and early 2000s, but as Columbus CEO notes,

“The shale drilling boom hit Ohio in the 2010s. The state’s gas production went from 78.1 billion cubic feet in 2010 to 1.47 trillion cubic feet in 2016. Oil production has also soared, but Ohio shale has turned out to be richer with gas rather than oil.”

And this uptick in natural gas production has led to great economic benefits for the entire state. Coupled with new laws regulating how energy producers charge, the natural gas boom has moved Ohio, and the country, in the right direction in terms of heating costs. As Columbus CEO writes,

“Residents and businesses paid 10 cents per kilowatt-hour in 2015, the most recent year available, which was 21st highest in the country, up from 29th in 1992. If not for shale gas, prices would almost certainly be higher in Ohio and many other states.”

Continued use of natural gas is helping Ohio’s economy grow, and helping Buckeyes keep money in their pockets. CEPI is excited that such an expansion in natural gas production has taken place, and we hope to see pipeline capacity expand to match it. Projects underway in the region will provide a way to transport natural gas to market, something that is much needed if we want to continue to benefit from our natural resources.