Louisiana may have ‘modest’ oil and gas jobs growth by end of 2021

BY KRISTEN MOSBRUCKER | STAFF WRITER |NOV 18, 2020

Louisiana’s energy sector growth is likely to be stifled even as the economy recovers from the recession triggered by the coronavirus pandemic. 

Roughly 2,900 jobs in oil and natural gas production, oil refining and chemical manufacturing are expected to be added back in Louisiana by the end of 2021, but will still be short of employment levels seen before the pandemic began, according to the LSU Center for Energy Studies’ annual report on the energy sector. 

Corporations active in the energy industry, which includes oil and gas and petrochemicals, are under pressure by investors to curb or even eliminate major investments to preserve cash. Financing for aging fossil fuel infrastructure is more difficult to obtain while demand for oil and gas industry products remains much lower than before the public health crisis and related restrictions on the economy began about eight months ago.

That means the jobs outlook for oil and gas production is bleak. Also, some multibillion-dollar liquefied natural gas export terminals in Louisiana are less likely to be constructed because of contracted demand triggered by the global economic downturn. 

The trajectory of the U.S. Gulf Coast energy industry relies on global demand, which has changed drastically and doesn’t bode well for new investment in the state even if projects previously announced are not canceled or postponed, according to the annual “Gulf Coast Energy Outlook” compiled by co-authors David Dismukes and Greg Upton at the LSU Center for Energy Studies. 

Among the top companies investing in petrochemical manufacturing sites, the average capital expenditure budgets were slashed by 25% this year. That means tens of billions less in … Continue Reading Full Story

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