During the past five years, U.S. natural gas supply increased quickly and dramatically as shale gas production increased. Expectations of constrained gas supplies were confounded, and prices reacted accordingly:
wholesale gas prices fell 55 percent in one year; and,
retail prices fell about $4 per MMBtu.
These lower prices were passed directly to natural gas consumers:
- 2010 gas bills were more than $175 lower for the average residential customer and more than $1,100 lower for the typical commercial customer compared to what the bills would have been using 2008 prices; and,
- When all gas consumers are included, these savings totaled about $250 billion.
Lower natural gas prices have also helped create jobs during one of the worst recessions on record:
Expansion of natural gas-dependent industries could lead to an additional one million manufacturing jobs by 2025.
- Job creation directly tied to energy extraction and delivery accounted for about 150,000 new jobs in 2011; and,