At 400 miles long and 50 miles wide, the Eagle Ford Shale is a huge gas and oil-producing site. Its impact is huge, too. In the five years it’s been operational, oil and gas production from the shale has brought thousands of new jobs to South Texas, prompting some to compare its development with Spindletop.
At the end of 2013, the U.S. Energy Information Administration announced that the Eagle Ford Shale had passed the 1 million barrel-per-day mark. According to the Institute for Economic Development at UTSA, the economic impact for the San Antonio region was $61 billion in 2012, and 116,000 jobs to date. By 2022, the shale will likely create 127,000 full-time jobs, the UTSA said.
Revenue from the production has trickled down to local communities, helping fund new schools, new hospitals and new training programs, the San Antonio Economic Development Foundation has said.
With City South regulations on their way out, many see South San Antonio better poised than ever to benefit from the boom the Eagle Ford shale is bringing.
In South San Antonio, Halliburton opened the doors this past September to its new San Antonio operations center, which brings with it 1,000 new jobs. The company said more than half of those positions have been filled by San Antonio residents. Other companies, many of them international, are also exploring San Antonio.
For some, the impacts from the shale have also included negative developments. One study found that air and water pollution around extraction sites are high. Wear and tear on roads is also extensive, although San Antonio is not in a producing county, and is unlikely to see the kind of road damage that more rural counties have experienced.