A Triple Bottom Line Analysis of Ohio’s Imminent Natural Gas Play

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Garry Brewer
Essay Abstract: 
The large increase in domestically produced oil and gas is expected to continue to grow over the coming decades, putting America on track for energy independence. Ohio, with its oil and gas rich deposits in the Utica Shale formation has already begun to receive enormous attention from energy companies as a hotspot for valuable natural gas and natural gas liquids. However, there are concerns associated with this upcoming development including the use of hydraulic fracturing as the primary method for resource extraction as well as worries of economic decline following peak energy production. Distilled to its basic purpose, this essay is about how “Ohio” – its land owners, its legislators, and participating oil and gas exploration companies should manage the inevitable energy boom in the state from the perspectives of the triple bottom line: economic, environmental and social. By providing recommendations centered on these three variables, this essay seeks to ensure that Ohio’s fast-approaching energy boom is as beneficial as possible.