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They predicted it would create hundreds of thousands -- even millions -- of jobs. They talked about energy independence, waves of new industry flocking to the area. But today, years into the Marcellus shale boom, the numbers tell a different story.

Pennsylvania’s unemployment rate is now higher than the national average.

The state lost 5,800 jobs last year, ranking 49th in the nation for job creation. The latest government data shows that Marcellus shale development brought about 6,362 jobs annually to the state, which accounts for less than 0.5 percent of the workforce.

Experts say that the Marcellus boom may not be as big as the talk that surrounds it.

“(Marcellus) is not ultimately going to be a driver in all economic activity in the state of Pennsylvania,” he said. “It’s not something that is going to radically change the course of Pa.’s economy."