The COVID-19 virus has left many victims in its wake, and most likely there will be more. It is hitting on two fronts, human health and financial health. They will come up with a vaccine for the human health, but it will take longer for the financial health to recover.
In this day and age, it is easy to take things for granted, which has been such a positive for the state for a long time. That positive has been the energy business.
Railroad and agriculture helped start the state and have been large players through the years. But since oil was first drilled in 1884 in the Dallas Field, energy has played a major part in building Wyoming. Now with coal, oil, natural gas, trona and uranium industries, Wyoming has been very fortunate. The taxes provided by these energy companies are enormous.
While one can’t say enough good about the state revenues provided by these industries, there is another segment out there I feel deserves praise equal to or above those revenues of the state. That segment is the owners and managers of those energy and service companies and especially those who live in the state.
These wonderful people have been so unselfish with their own personal dollars to help the state with funds for hospitals, the University of Wyoming and all of the junior colleges, YMCAs, Boys and Girls Clubs, and of course, the local fair’s 4-H and FFA livestock sales along with the Wyoming State Fair.
The list goes on and on. One can’t drive very far in the communities of Wyoming and not recognize some good resulting because of these people. I’m not going to start naming these people because those names would take up the whole issue of the Roundup, but you know who they are.
The tragedy of this virus is some of these energy companies may not be able to stay in business. Two out-of-state companies that have been in the news lately for falling on hard times are Ultra Petroleum and Jonah Energy that both operate in Sublette County on the Pinedale Anticline and Jonah Field that produces mainly natural gas.
Take the Jonah Field when Encana Oil and Gas owned it, for example. Encana gave millions back to the communities, especially to those in Sublette County, but the Wyoming businessmen who sold to Encana were especially generous to the people of Wyoming and are still active today. We can’t thank them enough for all the support they have given to the people of Wyoming.
These Wyoming business people who have made their living in energy and related businesses are special people. It always seems whenever there is a need, they have stepped up to help.
It is going to be hard times in the coming months, especially in the energy business where so many are employed. To those business people, our heroes, who have helped so much for so long, we say thank you from the bottom of our hearts.