Marcellus Shale Gas Development and Farming
Kyle A. Hoy,
Irene M. Xiarchos,
Timothy W. Kelsey,
Kathryn J. Brasier and
Leland L. Glenna
Agricultural and Resource Economics Review, 2018, vol. 47, issue 3, 634-664
We study changes in farming in the Marcellus region associated with unconventional natural gas drilling activity. Due to concerns raised by the popular press, we consider 18 different county-level agricultural variables. While we find no significant changes in the number of farms or land in farms in drilling counties relative to non-drilling counties, there is an increase in median farm sizes, indicating potential consolidation in drilling counties. Despite anecdotal evidence suggesting a transition away from dairy farming to either beef or hay production, we find no support for this at the county level.
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