The People of America's Oil and Natural Gas Indusry

Energy and Jobs in Krugmanland

Mark Green

Mark Green
Posted October 20, 2011

Many thanks to Paul Krugman for including my favorite chart on his blog today. It shows the jobs that could be created by expanding the safe and responsible development of America's natural resources.

While the chart is awesome, Krugman's post is a bit of a mess. First off, the oil and natural gas industry isn't calling for a "weakening of environmental regulation." Second, Krugman pooh-poohs economic multipliers. Yeah, we use them. So do many other economic modelers. So does the White House. That's because whether the jobs are direct or induced, every one of them is very real to the job holder. They all count.

Most curious, then, is how Krugman dismisses creating 200,000 jobs in 2012 and 2013 as "very little." Hmm. Let's look at that chart again:

POJOBS.jpgIf you follow the y-axis, that's 200,000 jobs in 2012, rising to pretty near 400,000 in 2013. "Very little?" In this economy? Yes, Krugman's post is a bit of a mess.

We'll leave it up to you. A show of hands if you want to see 200,000 jobs created next year - in a way that will improve our energy security and actually generate additional revenue for government.

Wow! That's a lot of hands.

One last point: There's been a lot of nay-saying about the number of jobs our industry might create, the types of jobs, how soon they would be created, etc. How about some serious debate on the policy changes needed to unleash this job-creating dynamic? People want jobs and they're eager to hear how they might be created. We have the answer:

Update: See also Return to Krugmanland


Mark Green joined API after a career in newspaper journalism, including 16 years as national editorial writer for The Oklahoman in the paper’s Washington bureau. Mark also was a reporter, copy editor and sports editor. He earned his journalism degree from the University of Oklahoma and master’s in journalism and public affairs from American University. He and his wife Pamela live in Occoquan, Va., where they enjoy their four grandchildren.