West Virginia is a state that is rich in natural resources and ripe with technological advancements. The leading industries in West Virginia include chemicals, biotech, energy, aerospace and automotive.
Here's a look at the top five industries in West Virginia:
1. Chemicals: According to the West Virginia Department of Commerce
, a large portion of West Virginia's industry is chemical manufacturing. They report that West Virginia is home to about 140 different chemical-related companies that provide over 12,800 jobs to the state. This makes West Virginia the location of one of the largest amount of chemical manufacturing companies in the world.
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Nearly a quarter of the state's $4.8 billion amount of international exports consists of chemicals and polymers. In addition to this, one of the biggest amounts of resin producers is found in West Virginia’s Polymer Alliance Zone.
Home to industry leaders like Dow, DuPont, Bayer, PPG, BASF an Proviron, West Virginia contains one of the largest concentrations of biotech industries. The West Virginia Department of Commerce says that this includes the areas of agricultural feedstock, as well as chemical and pharmaceutical industries.
Another reason for West Virginia's success in this area is due to the fact that there are major research universities located in the state, which attract a wealth of resources and partnerships. The top U.S. based generic pharmaceutical manufacturer, Mylan Pharmaceuticals, is located in West Virginia.
West Virginia is one of the primary regions in the U.S. for coal mining, according to Britannica.
However, they indicate that the industry is being threatened due to environmental concerns about surface mining, known as mountaintop removal.
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Nevertheless, West Virginia produces about one-tenth of the amount of coal in the country. The West Virginia Department of Commerce states that West Virginia is the top interstate electricity exporter in the country. The 6,000 foot deep Marcellus Shale rock formation is said to be home to over 50 trillion cubic feet of natural gas.
The aerospace industry is one of the fastest-growing divisions of their economy, according to the West Virginia Department of Commerce. This movement forward is due partially to the state's large amount of experienced industry workers.
Another reason is that West Virginia contains an abundance of primary and fabricated metal products, which are needed by the industry. This is a significant factor as raw materials consist of over half of total aerospace production costs.
West Virginia is home to many automotive forerunners such as Toyota Motor Manufacturing, Hino Motors, Gestamp, NGK Spark Plugs and Diamond Electric. The fact that The National Research Center for Alternative Fuels, Engines and Emissions is located at West Virginia University is a contributing factor.
They are responsible for organizing research on fuel emissions, engines and automobiles. Alternative fuels and technological automotive advancements are studied at West Virginia University's National Alternative Fuels Training Center.
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