Oil and natural gas companies added 2,400 upstream jobs to their Texas payrolls in October, marking the 23rd consecutive month of job growth, according to data from the Texas Workforce Commission (TWC).

Upstream activity is defined as oil and natural gas extraction and support activities for mining. It excludes other industry sectors such as refining, petrochemicals, fuels wholesaling, oilfield equipment manufacturing, pipelines and gas utilities.

“The upward trend in upstream job growth continues as oil and natural gas companies invest in Texas, anchoring the state’s position as a global energy leader,” Texas Oil & Gas Association (TXOGA) President Todd Staples said. “Our economy, our environment and our future are more secure because of what’s happening in the oil and natural gas industry in Texas.”

The state is not back to the high point of December 2014, just as the oil price crash dealt a severe blow across the industry and the Texas upstream workforce numbered about 308,900, TWC noted. The low point was in September 2016, when fewer than 200,000 people were employed in the Texas upstream sector.

The Lone Star State over the past two years or so has recovered almost half of the jobs lost, according to TWC.

“Since the low point, employment in the Texas upstream sector has grown by 56,600 jobs, which pay among the highest wages in Texas,” TXOGA noted.