BATON ROUGE, La. (BRPROUD) – Louisiana is expected to see an increase in oil and gas industry jobs – most of them being right here in the capital region.
In 2015, Louisiana experienced an oil crash leading up to almost 20,000 workers being laid off. LSU Professor Greg Upton studies energy production in Louisiana and explains the hardship the state has faced since then. “Employment stabilized, but it really did not go back anywhere near those pre-crash levels. And then, of course, we had the COVID-19 pandemic,” he explained.
Upton says during the second quarter of 2023, Louisiana will gain 3,500 new jobs in two major fields, upstream oil and gas extraction and services sectors. “Drilling a hole in the ground and producing those hydrocarbons out of the ground, and an even larger part of the sector, which takes those hydrocarbons and processes those into products that you and I use every day.” Baton Rouge Area Chamber Russell Richardson explained that 2,000 of the 3,500 jobs will be in the capital area. “In the pipeline that we have is in the capital region, the nonparish area, there are probably 15 to 2000 jobs.”
Richardson says this is a good thing for our area. Upton says while this will not bring levels back to pre-COVID numbers, it will still help with employment and your energy bill. “It provides low-cost energy to our citizens here and it provides lots of high-paying jobs to people across that spectrum,” Upton continued.
Richardson says it will be a while before you see the change. “It can take anywhere from a year to two or three, two or three years to play out over time. I think 2023 as Greg Upton said, will be a good year, a healthy year for the project pipeline,” said Richardson.
And if you are looking for a job, he says to look on their website for job fairs in the near future.