Resources for the Future, Inc.

To understand the benefits and costs of shale gas and oil development on local communities

  • Amount $608,905
  • City Washington, DC
  • Investigator Alan Krupnick
  • Year 2015
  • Program Research
  • Sub-program Energy and Environment

Funds from this grant support three projects by Resources for the Future (RFF) that aim to improve our understanding of the broad array of local community impacts, both positive and negative, brought on by the extraction of shale gas and oil. In its first project, RFF will develop a comprehensive risk/benefit matrix and community impact framework that will bring together, in one place, a description and assessment of the various impacts that communities may face due to local shale gas extraction, covering everything from increased demands on local water infrastructure to increased traffic and noise. The second project will explore the legal and economic dimensions of private land leasing agreements, exploring the diversity of these agreements and how their differences result in differing consequences for municipalities and their residents. The third project consists of a qualitative exploration of the development of industry-community voluntary practices, protocols, and behaviors that constitute what is often termed the “social license to operate” in different localities. The effort will catalog how individual communities have worked with oil and gas companies to manage the inevitable disruptions caused by local oil and gas extraction. Taken together, the three projects will create a framework that will capture the diversity of local responses to the influx of shale gas developers, provide useful new directions for future scholarship, and give municipalities new resources for how to manage their own local shale gas and oil development.

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