Energy Industry Should Power State's Economic Recovery

Daily Herald (Arlington Heights, IL), November 15, 2010 | Go to article overview
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Energy Industry Should Power State's Economic Recovery


Every business in Illinois depends on energy in some way, shape or form. But did you know generating and delivering that energy is one of the state's most vital economic engines?

A recent study commissioned by the Illinois Chamber Foundation about the economic power of our state's energy industry (online at

bit.ly/ds3oA3) reveals results that might surprise you. Conducted by Northern Illinois University's Regional Development Institute, the study is the first time anyone has attempted to take the wide variety of energy jobs in the state and quantify their economic impact. Here are the headlines:

Jobs, jobs, jobs -- Illinois' energy industry directly employs more than 50,000 full- and part-time workers. In addition, the energy industry indirectly supports more than 100,000 additional full- and part-time jobs as a result of industry operations.

Good jobs at good wages -- The average employee compensation in Illinois' energy industry is 50 percent higher than the state's overall average.

Three times the impact of the automotive industry

-- Illinois' energy industry annually creates $80 billion in direct economic output, three times as much as the state's automotive industry.

Huge taxpayers -- The energy industry generates nearly $2.9 billion in federal taxes annually, including corporate, personal, payroll and other taxes. The industry accounts for $2.3 billion annually in taxes to state and local units of government.

Energy growth = Economic growth -- Growth in the energy industry would have a tremendously positive effect on the Illinois economy. If 100 employees are added to the energy industry, 249 additional jobs will be created in the state. For every $100 million increase in output of the energy industry, state employment increases by approximately 180 workers and the wealth of the state increases by $425 million.

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