Texas has long been synonymous with energy jobs in the oil and gas sector, but a recent study has confirmed that the Lone Star State leads the country in both the creation of such jobs and production, the Houston Business Journal reports.
According to the news source, the study, conducted by the Texas Independent Producers and Royalty Owners Association (TIPRO), provides a comprehensive look at where the energy jobs in the country are, which pay the highest and where the best prospects may be. Released as a part of its State of Energy Report, the figures showed 379,800 people work in the oil and gas sector in Texas, with 34,600 of the jobs added in the first six months of 2012. Total employment currently makes up 39 percent of all oil and gas jobs in the country.
Across the U.S., 971,200 people were employed in the industry in 2012 - a 7 percent increase compared with the previous year. What's more, the average energy salary was 119 percent higher than the average for all other occupations. Total national payroll for the sector rose to $104 billion last year, a 12 percent increase compared to 2011.
"Texas continues to lead the country in oil and gas production, innovation and employment, due in part to our favorable business and regulatory climate," said TIPRO President Ed Longanecker. "This year alone, our industry will invest literally tens of billions of dollars in oil and gas exploration and production in Texas. We must continue to support this tremendous momentum through sound policies, while responsibly addressing all issues associated with this growth."
TIPRO Chairman David F. Martineau added that the greater investments that are being made in Texas' energy sector – and the $10 billion in revenue the sector brought in for the state – means more than just better employment prospects.
"Increasing domestic production of oil and gas is providing hope for a bright future for our country, contributing billions to our government coffers and supporting millions of American jobs, while at the same time lessoning our dependence on foreign oil and reducing carbon dioxide emissions through increased use of natural gas," Martineau said.
The report also noted that Louisiana's oil and gas sector came in second behind Texas, as 81,400 people are currently employed in the industry. Rounding out the top five states, Oklahoma has 74,600 oil and gas workers, California has 46,400 and Pennsylvania has 34,900.