Last week, the Pipeline Safety Coalition hosted a public forum about pipeline safety in Chester County. During the event, five panelists gave brief presentations on various topics, including the different types of pipelines and their outlooks towards Mariner East pipeline projects. Unfortunately, the presentations missed the complete story about how the Mariner East projects and others similar will bring many economic benefits for the region.
Residents who attended the meeting were given the opportunity to question the panelists and voice their opinions on building the pipelines in their community. Chester County Chairman, Terence Farrelly emphasized the commonality of pipelines in Pennsylvania and how this issue is not new. He also pointed out that there are 600 miles of pipeline in a 700 mile area in Pennsylvania already.
Reiterating Farrelly’s point, local landowner and member of the Pennsylvania State Grange, Betsy Huber, described her positive relationship with pipelines on her own land. “We grew crops on it, the cows grazed on it,” Huber said. “When construction is finished, you’ll forget the pipeline is there and everyone else will too.”
Pennsylvania is home to one of the largest reserves of natural gas in the world, but without pipelines we cannot benefit from this natural resource. The results of developing pipeline infrastructure would not only benefit the energy industry, but local communities, small businesses, and landowners as well. These positive impacts include a growth in jobs, a growth in energy support infrastructure, and a better investment for future generations. However, the forum unsuccessfully highlighted these benefits.
Read more about the public forum here.