New Offshore Atlantic Coast Study Could Spur Economy

For Immediate Release: Thursday, December 5, 2013

Contact:  Nicolette Nye, (202) 465-8463,


 Study Shows that Developing Atlantic Offshore Oil and Natural Gas Could Spur 280,000 New Jobs and Add $Billions to the Economy and Government by 2035


A new study released by the National Ocean Industries Association (NOIA) and the American Petroleum Institute (API) shows that opening the U.S. Atlantic Outer Continental Shelf (OCS) to offshore oil and natural gas development could have remarkable benefits for job creation, domestic investment, revenue to the government, and U.S. energy security. The study, conducted by Quest Offshore Inc., shows that offshore oil and natural gas development in the Atlantic OCS could create nearly 280,000 jobs, spur an additional $195 billion in new private investment, contribute up to $24 billion per year to the U.S. economy, generate $51 billion in new revenue for the government, and add 1.3 million barrels of oil equivalent per day to domestic energy production, between 2017 and 2035.  These jobs are in addition to any jobs and revenue generated by offshore wind or wave energy projects that might take place.


“It is truly amazing what the offshore energy industry already does for America while only having access to less than 15 percent of the Outer Continental Shelf.  It would be more amazing to stop limiting ourselves to this one small area.  Opening the Atlantic coast to responsible oil and natural gas development could add to our workforce, overall economic growth, government coffers and energy security,” said NOIA President Randall Luthi.


If lease sales in the Atlantic OCS were held in 2018, exploratory drilling could begin the following year with the first production of oil and natural gas expected in 2026. Major capital investments, job creation, and revenue to the government would all begin years before the first barrel goes to market.


“The key is getting Atlantic lease sales included in the 2017-2022 Offshore Leasing Plan.  None of the benefits shown in the study can be realized without actual sales. Everyone is looking for the silver bullet that will decrease unemployment, increase federal revenue without raising taxes, and make America more energy secure.  Tapping more of our offshore energy is that elusive silver bullet,” said Luthi.


By 2035, the Atlantic coast region could see 215,000 new jobs as a result of offshore oil and gas activity. Inland states outside the Atlantic coast region could see 63,950 new jobs. The largest employment impact is predicted for North Carolina (55,422 new jobs), South Carolina (35,569 new jobs), and Virginia (24,979 new jobs). Mid and North Atlantic States could also see great job and revenue benefits.  Maryland, Delaware, Pennsylvania, New Jersey and New York could see over 40,000 new jobs, contributions to the economy of over $3.7 billion and an increase in state revenues in the neighborhood of $2.7 billion by 2035.  Active oil and gas development off the coasts of Newfoundland and Nova Scotia might mean similar resources are located off the New England coast.  Should that be so, the New England states could see 45,000 new jobs and state revenues of over $5 billion in that same time frame.


If offshore revenue sharing were legislated for coastal states to receive 37.5 percent, the federal government would receive over $33 billion a year and individual states would receive over $19 billion a year by 2035.


“Opening up the Atlantic OCS is only part of the energy equation.  The oil and natural gas industry must also be committed to significant financial investment and continue to show that these resources are developed efficiently and safely.  A cooperative, respectful relationship between industry and regulators means we can develop those oil and natural gas resources and maintain the highest safety and environmental standards,” said Luthi.

The full study, and executive summary, as well as national and state infographics are available at




NOIA is the only national trade association representing all segments of the offshore industry with an interest in the exploration and production of both traditional and renewable energy resources on the nation’s outer continental shelf.  NOIA’s mission is to secure reliable access and a fair regulatory and economic environment for the companies that develop the nation’s valuable offshore energy resources in an environmentally responsible manner. The NOIA membership comprises about 300 companies engaged in business activities ranging from producing to drilling, engineering to marine and air transport, offshore construction to equipment manufacture and supply, telecommunications to finance and insurance, and renewable energy.

National Ocean Industries Association
1120 G Street, NW • Suite 900
Washington, DC 20005

Phone: 202.347.6900 | Email: