The front page of the Philadelphia Inquirer showcased the positive impacts the Mariner East Pipeline is providing to the Philadelphia region. The Mariner East Pipeline runs horizontally across the state, connecting energy producing areas from the Marcellus and Utica Shale formations in Western Pennsylvania, through the Marcus Hook Terminal in Delaware County. Andrew Maykuth, the author of the cover story, specifically highlighted the rise in tanker activity along the Delaware River, which has been a boon for the local economy.
Since the late 2000’s, Pennsylvania has steadily increased its production of natural gas and is now the second largest producer in the country. While this has certainly unleashed economic benefits in the Western half of Pennsylvania, those benefits have also traversed to Philadelphia and the surrounding counties. As the Inquirer correctly points out in their article, for the entirety of 2011, only one tanker containing natural gas liquids departed from Delaware Bay. By last year, a whopping 328 tankers left Delaware River terminals – nearly one tanker full of gas each day. Today, roughly one out of four of the 1,346 cargo vessels that set sail from the region are filled with American-sourced energy.
The exponential growth in commerce has been good for the local economy, which “supporters of fuel exports say they are vital to generating foreign exchange and jobs, and in some cases, displace dirtier fuel like coal.” The rise in tanker traffic also requires “the services of a river pilot, tugboats, stevedores, and suppliers,” for each vessel.
Maykuth notes how the Mariner East Pipeline has led to the revitalization of the Marcus Hook Terminal. He writes “the Marcus Hook Terminal, a former Sunoco refinery that shut down in 2011 and has been rebuilt by its new owner, Energy Transfer LP of Dallas, as a facility for processing, storing, and transloading gas liquids onto ships.” Without the Pipeline, it is possible this area of industrial land would remain blighted and underused.
PEIA’s work regarding the completion of the Pipeline is even recognized in the article. Maykuth goes on to point out “Pennsylvania Energy Infrastructure Alliance, a coalition of supportive business and labor groups that lauded the economic benefits it will bring.” Completion of the project was a significant undertaking, but PEIA’s coordinated and sustained efforts contributed greatly to its successful conclusion.
Read the entire article here.