This morning, Marty Molloy, a candidate for Senate District 9, held a press conference in which he inflamed the already misinformed rhetoric regarding the safety of pipeline projects – namely that of the Mariner East 2.
You can watch the video of the event here.
The purpose of this morning’s event was to talk about pipelines. The candidate has attempted to latch onto pipelines as his central campaign issue, refusing to acknowledge the facts that pipelines are the safest way to transport energy resources; safer than by rail and safer than by truck on our roadways.
Calling Molloy out on his misguided claims were members of the building and construction trades unions, whose jobs it is to build pipelines. Just as some doctors are trained to perform surgery on patients, building pipelines so that they operate safely after construction is what these guys do for a living.
Plumbers and Steamfitters Local 420 Business Manager, Anthony Gallagher, was on hand to assure that the Mariner East 2 pipeline, which will run from Washington County, in western Pennsylvania to the Marcus Hook Industrial Complex in Delaware County, southeastern Pennsylvania, will be built with the latest technology to ensure the safety to communities across the line. To provide attendees some insights to the safety precautions that take place during construction, Gallagher commented that 100% of the welds must pass inspection. If they don’t pass the inspection, they must be redone. And before it goes into operation, the line must be tested at 1 ½ times the operating pressure to ensure it was built correctly and operates safely.
Molloy’s campaign held this event because he has adopted the mantra of the anti-progress, fringe activists who are continually asking for additional meetings and more time. Sunoco Logistics, the parent company of Mariner East 2, has been talking to landowners, local residents, hosting meetings, and applying for permits to build this pipeline for years. One labor member in the crowd commented that they had never seen Molloy at any of these meetings. To ask for more meetings is just asking for further delay of a necessary project for Pennsylvania.
A considerable amount of misinformation has been thrown around by those opposed to energy infrastructure. Also at today’s press conference was Lynda Farrell, the head of the Pipeline Safety Coalition, which according to a recent article by Shawn McCoy of Inside Sources, is a part of a federal investigation into the Technical Assistance Grant (TAG) program. This investigation was spurred by Congress because of the misuse of taxpayer funds to support anti-pipeline activists like Ms. Farrell. According to the article, she has received at least $1.1 million of taxpayer dollars to fund her anti-energy activism. The TAG program clearly states that funds “may not be used for lobbying, for direct advocacy for or against a pipeline construction or expansion project, or in direct support of litigation,” which happens to be exactly what she does.
For the skilled craft union members who will build Mariner East 2, this project is a job for them. They build pipelines for a living. The Mariner East 2 pipeline is a job that they plan to do right to ensure it is built and operated safely.