MORE than 75,000 people could be living and working in the Pilbara by 2012, with the number of resource industry employees expected to double and fly-in, fly-out workers expected to triple by 2015, according to projections from the Pilbara Industry Community Council. The figures show resource-related employees will increase from 15,000 to 30,000 over the next seven years, while the fly-in, fly-out contingent could reach 17,000. Residential employment is expected to grow from 10,000 to 15,000, while the total reaches over 45,000 by 2010, and 50,000 by 2015 when multiplier assumptions are applied. The study was commissioned by PICC and undertaken by Heuris Partners economic consultant Mike Waller. PICC is an initiative of the Chamber of Minerals and Energy and industry partners including BHP Billiton Iron Ore, Chevron Australia, Fortescue Metals Group, Rio Tinto Iron Ore and Woodside. CME chief executive Reg Howard-Smith said the estimated resident population data normally used for service planning in Australia needed to be supplemented by other information in fast-growing areas like the Pilbara.