The latest American Lung Association (ALA) “State of the Air” report shows that the counties with the most natural gas facilities and production around the Appalachian Basin have all received “passing” grades for air quality.
In 2021, Washington County saw an increase in natural gas production of 17 percent — the highest producing county in the state representing about 18.4 percent of total production. Washington County has been given a passing grade for the last five years, all the while natural gas production continued to rise.
Pennsylvania’s second highest natural gas producing county, Susquehanna, also received a passing grade from ALA, while accounting for 16 percent of all natural gas production in Pennsylvania.
Similarly, Greene County increased production in 2021 by 5 percent and has received a passing grade for five years running, and Beaver County, where the new ethane cracker plant will be operational later this year, has received passing grades for the last seven years during the plant’s construction.
In the northeastern part of the state, Bradford County, the county that saw the largest percentage gain in production in 2021 of 22 percent, has consecutively been two times lower than the ALA’s passing criteria. Meanwhile, Lycoming County saw a 9.7 percent increase in natural gas production in 2021, and has received a passing grade from ALA for the last decade. have received a passing grade all throughout their decade-long increase of natural gas production.
Since the beginning of the shale revolution, Southwestern Ohio has led the state in natural gas production. The top three Ohioan counties in terms of production are Belmont, Monroe, and Jefferson counties. Monroe County is Ohio’s second largest producing county for natural gas and has increased production by nearly four-hundred-times more than ten years ago; however, ALA did not include it in this year’s report.
Jefferson County, Ohio’s third-largest natural gas producing county saw production increase by more than 11-times what it was just five years ago. Despite this incredible growth, Jefferson County has received passing grades from the ALA since 2013.
In recent years, West Virginia became a top-five state in terms of natural gas production.
Monongalia County, one of West Virginia’s top producing counties received an easy passing grade from the ALA. In fact, Monongalia County has received a passing grade since 2003, all while the shale revolution has boosted natural gas production in the county by nearly fifteen-times more than the amount produced a decade ago.
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