Because of hydraulic fracturing, Pennsylvania is poised to become a national leader in natural gas production. Lawmakers from Harrisburg to Washington, D.C., need to put the right policies in place to help Pennsylvania reach its full energy potential.

Pennsylvania is no stranger to oil and natural gas production. In fact, more than 350,000 oil and natural gas wells have been drilled in Pennsylvania since its first commercial oil well in 1859.

Today, Pennsylvania is in the middle of a shale gas revolution with profound economic and employment implications. Much of the Marcellus Shale, the world’s second largest natural gas reserve, extends through the state. Energy development and development projects in Pennsylvania support the livelihoods of 339,000 Pennsylvania workers, contribute $34.7 billion each year to the state economy and are driving a statewide manufacturing renaissance.

Despite the misguided opposition of anti-energy activists, hydraulic fracturing—which has been used safely in America for more than sixty five years on more than a million wells—is the key to Pennsylvania’s robust energy economy and energy future. According to the Pennsylvania Department of Labor and Industry, more than 72,000 oil and natural gas jobs have been generated in the state since 2009 because of hydraulic fracturing. These jobs pay, on average, $30,000 more each year than jobs in other Pennsylvania industries.