The Economic Impact of Shale Gas Development: A Natural Experiment along the New York and Pennsylvania Border

Brandan Cosgrove, Colby College


In the United States, the rapid increase in shale gas production has recently stimulated local economies. This paper investigates the regional economic impact of shale gas development. The border of New York and Pennsylvania provides a natural experiment for its economic impact because of the moratorium on fracking in NY and the supportive fracking regulations in PA. Using BLS data from 2001-2013, results show that shale gas development has a statistically significant impact at the industry level, but not across the entire economy. The findings contribute new evidence to the economic benefits and the boom-bust cycle of shale gas extraction.