Back to the Patch: Shale Jobs Headed Toward Strong Recovery, Report Shows

Employment in the U.S. oil and gas industry is set to expand by 12.5% this year, a Rystad report shows.

Back to the Patch: Shale Jobs Headed Toward Strong Recovery, Report Shows

Although the oil price rebound is leading to steady job gains, Rystad’s research shows that wages are unlikely to grow significantly this year. (Source: QiuJu Song/Shutterstock.com)

During the pandemic, when oil demand and prices dropped to unprecedented levels, the oil and gas industry shed nearly 200,000 jobs, equivalent to a whopping 20% of its workforce. But thanks to high oil prices and bullish market sentiment, U.S. oil and gas employment is headed toward a strong recovery, according to new research by Rystad Energy.

Almost half of the jobs lost during the pandemic have already been recovered with oil and gas employment set to jump by 12.5% this year, increasing from around 863,000 to 971,000 total jobs by the end of 2022, the report shows.

Additionally, the total number of jobs in 2027 is expected to reach 1.09 million—a marginal increase from the 1.07 million in the sector pre-Covid in 2019.

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Faiza Rizvi

Faiza Rizvi is a senior editor of ESG for Hart Energy's editorial department, with a strong focus on E&P Plus and HartEnergy.com. She has been covering all facets of the U.S. and international energy industry for over 5 years.