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Energy Boom and Gloom? Local Effects of Oil and Natural Gas Drilling on Subjective Well†Being

Karen Maguire and John Winters ()

Growth and Change, 2017, vol. 48, issue 4, 590-610

Abstract: Prior to the precipitous drop in oil prices in 2014, the U.S. had experienced a substantial increase in oil and natural gas extraction due to technological advancements including horizontal drilling and hydraulic fracturing. This increased energy development likely created both benefits and costs, but the net effects for local residents are not well understood. This paper examines the effects of conventional and horizontal oil and natural gas drilling in Texas on subjective assessments of life†satisfaction and bad mental health days for nearby residents. Horizontal drilling has statistically significant deleterious effects on well†being, but the effects are driven by the Dallas†Fort Worth (DFW) metropolitan area, an area with both very high levels of horizontal drilling and a large urban population.

Date: 2017
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