Laying out a blueprint for how small- and medium-sized businesses can take advantage of the opportunities provided within the current U.S. natural gas development boom, the Marcellus Shale Coalition (MSC) has released the second in a series of recommended practices aimed at bolstering the Marcellus Shale region’s supply chain.

In formulating the newest set of recommended practices, the MSC hosted 15 supply chain forums in partnership with 18 local and regional economic development agencies and chambers of commerce across Pennsylvania, New York, Ohio, West Virginia and Maryland, connecting with more than 1,800 participants.

The second set of recommended practices follows the MSC’s first recommendations, issued in April, which focused on site planning, development and restoration (see Shale Daily, April 30). The recommended practices came after the MSC in March launched an online business directory,, to connect the industry with the region’s small- and medium-sized businesses.

“The safe, tightly regulated development of clean-burning American natural gas has been, and continues to be, a driving source of job creation and economic growth across our region,” said MSC President Kathryn Klaber. “This cascading effect, positively impacting businesses of all sizes through a growing and robust supply chain, is as undeniable as the economic, environmental and national security benefits of our abundant natural gas resources. And as an industry, we are fully committed to helping local business expand and hire.”

Some of the supply chain recommended practices include providing safe workplaces for employees, contractors, and in the communities of operation implementing state-of-the-art environmental protection across operations; and continuously improving practices and seeking transparency in operations.

“Sourcing and hiring locally, identifying regional employees, contractors, and vendors, and working to keep our economy growing makes good business sense and is part of industry’s commitment to getting this historic opportunity right for this generation and beyond,” Klaber added.

In conjunction with the recommended practices, the MSC also issued testimonials from member companies, including ARM Group Inc., Borton-Lawson, Glenn O. Hawbaker Inc. and Schramm, which combined have added hundreds of employees and opened several offices across the region dedicated to Marcellus operations.