The proliferation of unconventional shale gas development has revived scholarly interest in the impacts of rapid industrial development on communities, schools, policies and politics, public health, the environment, and economic growth. However, with few exceptions, close examinations of the gendered structure of opportunity within areas experiencing rapid shale gas development have largely been absent from this literature. This article uses key informant interview data from low income men and women, as well as from social service providers within Pennsylvania communities heavily affected by shale gas development. In contrast to assertions that shale gas development will yield broad-based economic development impacts for the region, the experiences of the participants in this study suggest a more segmented economic opportunity structure coupled with the creation of new gendered economic and social vulnerabilities as class and gender intersect to create decreased economic opportunities and increased social vulnerabilities for low-income women.

Publication Date