Every day, Americans heat or cool their homes, use cell phones, drive cars to work and use hundreds of every day products made of plastic. What many people may not realize, is that all of those activities are made possible in large part thanks to the oil and natural gas industry. Oil and natural gas is used to make thousands of every day items and processes work. Oklahoma is the 4th largest producer of natural gas, providing 1,827.3 billion cubic feet in 2011. We are ranked 5th in the amount of natural gas reserves. Rapid shale development is happening in areas such as the Woodford shale in southeast Oklahoma. Oil is also in abundance. Fossil fuels, which supply almost 95 percent of the world’s energy, are to thank for much of our high standard of living. Thousands of products are produced from petroleum, such as gasoline, waxes, asphalt, fertilizers, plastics and medicine. Each day more than 200,000 barrels of oil are produced from approximately 125,000 wells in Oklahoma. Oklahoma is the nation’s 5th leading producer of oil. Thousands of Oklahomans – 83,000 to be exact – work in this industry every day. One in every six jobs in Oklahoma is directly or indirectly supported by the oil and natural gas industry. More than 25 percent of the state’s revenue comes from the gross production taxes, income taxes, sales taxes and fees that are paid by oil and natural gas producers and their employees. So next time you start up your car, grab your cell phone to make a call, or use products made with plastic, remember that a hardworking Oklahoman likely had a hand in it. Every Oklahoman is touched by the oil and natural gas industry in some way, every day, and the work we are doing is leading the nation toward energy independence. Learn more at http://advancingenergy.oerb.com/.