An economic impact study released Tuesday by the Ohio Oil & Gas Energy Education Program (OOGEEP) found that more than 200,000 oil and natural gas jobs, generating $12 billion in wages and income, could be created in the Buckeye State’s portion of the Utica Shale by 2015.

The 92-page report — conducted by Cleveland-based economic research firm Kleinhenz & Associates Inc. with input from four state universities — also projected that landowners and others could receive up to $1.6 billion in royalty payments by 2015, which is more than what the industry awarded over the past decade.

“The data clearly demonstrates the transformative force oil and gas exploration and development could have on the state’s economy,” said OOGEEP Executive Director Rhonda Reda. “Ohio has been given great geological gifts and the economic potential is tremendous.”

Tom Stewart, executive vice president of the Ohio Oil and Gas Association (OOGA), echoed that sentiment.

“Today, Ohio is beginning a new era of oil and gas exploration made possible by a triumph of technology that is unlocking reservoirs that until now were not accessible,” Stewart said. “The result will be the development of vast new supplies of reliable energy and the creation of jobs in the oil and gas sector, as well as in other business sectors, who are counting on this resource to expand authentic economic opportunity in Ohio.”

The report was released just before a two-day energy and economic development conference at The Ohio State University. In his remarks at the conference on Wednesday, Chesapeake Energy Corp. CEO Aubrey McClendon told attendees that the Utica could be worth $500 billion, and characterized the shale play as “the biggest thing economically to hit Ohio, since maybe the plow,” (see Shale Daily, Sept. 22).

McClendon also continued his role as the shale industry’s most aggressive promoter, telling two opponents to hydraulic fracturing as he entered the Ohio auditorium: “I’m the biggest fracker in the world. I’ve done it 16,000 times since 1989 and I’m proud of it,” before elaborating that his “plan” involved increasing jobs, lowering the cost of energy and helping the country become energy independent. “So what is your plan?” he asked.

When they told him they want the energy supply to come from renewable fuels, he said, “It’s not reality. It can’t happen.”

The American Petroleum Institute (API) released a report on Sept. 7 (see Daily GPI, Sept. 8). That 57-page study, performed by Wood Mackenzie, projected more than 1.4 million new jobs and $800 billion in additional tax revenue that could be generated nationally by 2030 if federal regulation over the oil and gas industry were more flexible. API said another 10 million boe/d could be generated by 2030 if oil and gas development were encouraged.

“State and federal policies that allow for the responsible development of Ohio’s vast domestic oil and natural gas resources could make Ohio the starting point on the path to generating more than one million new American jobs in just seven years,” said API’s John Felmy, chief economist.

The OOGEEP report also found:

Ohio State University, Marietta College, Central Ohio Technical College and Zane State College assisted with the OOGEEP report.