Pennsylvania will likely end 2013 as America's second biggest natural gas producing state. That's the stunning conclusion one reaches assuming Pennsylvania's production reaches 3.2 trillion cubic feet this year.
In 2012, Louisiana ranked second and produced almost exactly 3 trillion cubic feet. Louisiana's 2012 production was just slightly less than its 2011 output, and it is not likely that Louisiana will produce 3.2 trillion cubic feet in 2013. The top gas producing state remains Texas that produces 7 trillion cubic feet.
Pennsylvania's gas production was just 182 billion cubic feet in 2007 and will have increased approximately 17 times or 1,600% by the end of this year. Pennsylvania's production is skyrocketing 50% this year and will be 13% of America's gas in 2013.
The skyrocketing gas production has been matched by a collapse in public confidence this year in the oversight of the gas industry. One reason for the collapse is that Pennsylvania remains the only major gas producing state without a real gas drilling tax. To tax the gas industry and to strengthen regulation, I have proposed a comprehensive gas drilling regulation and enforcement plan. It can be read at: