After the Boom (and the Bust) in Marcellus Shale Country
Laura Legere tells the story of Tioga County on either side of the Marcellus Shale boom. Since the boom, according to Legere, residents and businesses "have generally adjusted to the natural gas industry’s downward swing with equanimity."
A key characteristic of Tioga County's story is that the "drilling boom started and subsided earlier — and more abruptly — than other nearby counties and across the state." From 2008, the number of shale wells blossomed from 15 to 276 by 2010. Now the number is back down to 17.
But the county has proven resilient.
The Tioga County Development Corp. released an analysis of the lingering impact of Marcellus Shale development on the county’s economy in the summer of 2015 and found that total employment in the county was almost identical in 2014 to what it was in 2007 — although in the intervening years it had experienced gains (a 12 percent increase between 2009 and 2012) and dips (a 5 percent drop between 2007 and 2009, and another 6 percent drop between 2012 and 2014).
The article takes several angles to explain Tioga County's actions both during the boom and since. One of the keys to Tioga County's success, according to some of the locals: not changing too much to accommodate the boom.