Mariner East 2 is a critical energy infrastructure project, not only for Pennsylvania’s economy, but for the thousands of people it puts to work every day. Recently, lawmakers and public interest groups have levied several inaccurate claims against the project, and we would like to take this opportunity to set the record straight.
The value of this project cannot be overstated: The total potential economic impact from all Mariner East construction in the state is estimated to be $9.1 billion, supporting approximately 9,500 total jobs each year over six years of construction, with wages of $2.7 billion. For workers, their families, and the communities through which these projects traverse, these pipelines are lifelines to family-sustaining wages and tremendous opportunity for economic revitalization and increased tax revenue.
It should also not be ignored that the pipeline will bring economic revitalization and job restoration in southeastern Pennsylvania, where the pipeline will feed into the Marcus Hook Industrial Complex. The facility that was once a major refining hub was closed but has reopened for business as a site for the distribution, storing, and processing of the natural gas liquids such as propane, butane, and ethane from the Marcellus Shale. This is all possible because of the Mariner Pipeline projects. These products are used in our everyday lives, not only as a fuel, but to make the plastics that we use and the clothes that we wear.
Sunoco Pipeline agrees that building all pipelines, including Mariner East 2, to the highest federal and state safety standards – and often going above and beyond – is our top priority throughout construction. Delaying completion of this energy highway that will deliver vital products to high-demand markets will interfere with the economic growth of the state and endangers the livelihood of thousands of skilled workers.
Our commitment to transparency began 117 years ago when Sunoco first planted roots in Pennsylvania, and we have never wavered. Since the Mariner East 2 project first started, our dedicated public affairs and community outreach teams have held more than 500 in-person meetings with county and municipal leaders and 50 meetings with community organizations across the project area. We have also assigned dedicated community affairs liaisons in each construction segment along the 350-mile project.
Our outreach team has distributed more than 100 e-mail project updates and newsletters to county and township officials, as well as fielded thousands of calls and e-mails addressing general project updates, construction, and constituent issues. We also distribute a quarterly construction newsletter that includes project updates and other pertinent information. Additionally, construction activities are communicated to borough and township managers a minimum of once a week with normal updates occurring at least two or three times each week.
Our Mariner Emergency Responder Outreach (MERO) program has conducted specialized training sessions this year for more than 750 first responders in communities where Mariner East will operate. Since 2013, the MERO program has trained approximately 2,350 firefighters, police officers, emergency medical service providers, municipal emergency management officials, and other public safety personnel.
We understand that building new energy infrastructure is a complex topic – that’s why we set our standards high, and often exceed the strict federal rules for pipeline safety. We build our pipelines with high-strength carbon steel pipe, bury them deeper underground than required and inspect 100 percent of pipeline welds. We patrol our infrastructure networks more often than required, inspect them inside and out, and monitor them 24/7, 365 days a year.
Pipelines have been safely operating for decades in America, quietly powering our daily lives. Of America’s 2.5 million-mile network of energy infrastructure, approximately 199,000 miles are liquids pipelines transporting approximately 16 billion barrels of crude oil and petroleum products every year. The Mariner East 2 pipeline will do more than deliver access to clean, abundant, affordable petroleum products – it will also bring jobs and revenue to local communities and will do it in accordance with all state and federal laws, rules, and regulations, while employing the industry’s best practices and advanced technology to protect Pennsylvania’s valuable lands.
To date, mainline construction of the 20-inch pipeline is 98 percent complete, bringing this multibillion-dollar economic development project that much closer to delivering natural gas liquids from the Marcellus and Utica shale areas to the Marcus Hook Industrial Complex.
We are committed to keeping you safe while providing the energy that makes everyday life possible.
Matthew S. Ramsey is President and Chief Operating Officer of Energy Transfer Partners, L.P., and has served on the board of directors of ETP since November 2015. Ramsey was appointed as a director of Energy Transfer Equity in July 2012, and as a director of Sunoco LP, serving as chairman of Sunoco LP’s board since April 2015. Ramsey holds a B.B.A. in Marketing from the University of Texas at Austin and a J.D. from South Texas College of Law. He’s also a graduate of the Harvard Business School Advanced Management Program.