CLARION – The Marcellus Shale, the hottest natural gas boom in the United States, is offering unexpected business opportunities to Pennsylvania.
Clarion University’s Small Business Development Center (SBDC) has stepped forward to help local business benefit from this boom. Through a five-part seminar, Clarion SBDC is working with local economic development agencies to inform business owners on how they can take advantage of the economic benefits of the Marcellus Shale. The series provides information on the benefits and employment opportunities projected to boost the local economy within the next decade.
The Marcellus Shale formation is driving energy firms to Pennsylvania, and the influx of dollars is creating significant business opportunities with natural gas and service companies, supporting small businesses and worker spending. Plus, the spending from lease and royalty payments promises to ripple through our economy for years to come.
Kris Stiglitz, Clarion University SBDC Educational Coordinator, is one of the main organizers of the seminar developed in collaboration with Penn State Cooperative Extension. A five part webinar program began on Oct. 14, with the first topic discussing the “Economic Implications of the Marcellus Shale.”
The series continues in the Clarion University Eagle Commons Conference Room at 8 a.m. on Wednesday mornings for a period of five weeks. The upcoming seminar date and topics are: “Identifying Local Business Opportunities” on Oct. 21, “Success Stories” on Oct. 28, “Preparing Your Business for Success” on Nov. 4, and “Your Business Working with Others” on Nov. 10.
“We can expect a tremendous economic development impact throughout the northwestern Pennsylvania region due to the Marcellus Shale exploration and recovery activities,” said Dr. Woodrow Yeaney, Clarion University SBDC Director. “We hope to bring fact based information to people in small businesses to help them make sound decisions and deal with critical issues involving the Marcellus Shale.
“The impact of the Marcellus Shale finding will likely be great. Western Pennsylvania could literally be transformed and changes can be expected in our population, economy, communities and environment. An advantage that we have over deep natural gas drilling in Texas and Wyoming is our location in relationship to the gas consuming markets of the northeastern part of our nation, especially when considering the cost of gas transportation. There are also important employment and income effects on businesses that supply the industry and other service establishments when gas company employees spending their wage locally.”
The SBDC is poised to help local businesses and industries with their entrepreneurial strategies and business planning. If a business wants more information on the Marcellus Shale webinar series and would like to register, contact Kris Stiglitz at (814) 393-1797 or go to the SBDC website at www.clarion.edu/sbdc/classes/business.