Shale Revolution Helps Prevent More Than 11,000 Deaths Annually

Lower heating costs – brought on by increased natural gas production from the shale revolution – reduced winter mortality rates from 2000 to 2010, according to a new National Bureau of Economic Research paper. As the NBER paper explains,

“We find that lower heating prices reduce mortality in winter months. The estimated effect size implies that the drop in natural gas prices in the late 2000s, induced largely by the boom in shale gas production, averted 11,000 winter deaths per year in the US. We also find that the effect does not just represent short-run hastening of mortality.” (emphasis added)

This effect size is large enough that it should not be ignored when assessing the net health effects of shale production of natural gas.” (emphasis added)

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