These investments are helping revitalize Main Streets and fuel new manufacturing projects from Appalachia to the Gulf Coast. In Appalachia, for example, the region’s rapid increase in natural gas production has sparked new life into the now-bustling Ohio Valley.
“The energy industry has been a game changer for us in the tri-state region,” says Rick Frio, a longtime resident who created an energy services company and now works with XTO Energy. “I grew up in Wheeling, West Virginia, and I’m still here in the valley today. It used to be that we watched our friends’ kids move away, but now, we’re one of the hottest areas in the country. People are moving back. Without the energy industry, none of that would have happened.”
Abundant domestic energy supplies paired with new facilities or cutting-edge technology are creating thousands of jobs and a buzz of local activity. ExxonMobil plans to invest more than $50 billion over the next five years to expand its business in the United States. And in the Gulf Coast, the company’s expansion plans are helping create more than 45,000 jobs. These new positions are leading to even more jobs and growth across communities.
Travel to downtown Beaumont, Texas, beyond the walls of ExxonMobil’s facilities, and it’s clear that the area is teeming with fresh energy. The revitalized cityscape has drawn new businesses, events and visitors, all of which have contributed to recent civic strength.
Likewise, small businesses are growing at a rapid pace. Feeling the ripple effect, places like Baytown, Texas, are also seeing an outpouring of entrepreneurial spirit as construction workers, technical professionals and service workers find their services in demand.
Towns big and small across the country are filled with new energy that begets new opportunity and activity.