June 18, 2013
OUTPUT DOESN'T REQUIRE LABOR:
U.S. shale is a boon to manufacturers but not their workers (James B. Kelleher, Jun 14, 2013, Reuters)
Posted by Orrin Judd at June 18, 2013 5:28 AMThe uptick in energy exploration has prompted companies like The Timken Co. and U.S. Steel Corp. to pump hundreds of millions of dollars into their plants in the state to boost production. Wayne Struble, the policy director for John Kasich, Ohio's Republican governor, said the flood of energy-related dollars could be a major "game changer" for the state.But state employment data, academic research and a week-long tour of half a dozen factories in Ohio suggests the shale gas revolution has been a disappointment when it comes to job creation."The industries benefiting are more capital intensive than labor intensive," said Tom Waltermire, the chief executive of Team NEO, the economic development agency for northeast Ohio."Even a manufacturing renaissance won't require the same headcount per unit of output as we had 20 or 30 years ago. If it did require that, the renaissance would never happen."