Pipelines are Critical for the Safety of our Communities

Pipelines are the safest way to transport energy resources. Because of this, Pennsylvania needs to make necessary investments in its pipeline infrastructure to ensure that energy produced in Pennsylvania’s Marcellus and Utica shale can be safely transported to market in order to meet consumers’ needs.

The proposed Mariner East 2 pipeline is one of these necessary infrastructure projects that will bring tremendous benefits to all Pennsylvanians. Yes, unfortunately fringe activists with an anti-progress agenda, opposed to upgrades to our nations much needed infrastructure, have been spreading a lot of mistruths.

According to the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration, the pipeline natural gas delivery system is the safest form of energy delivery in the nation. More than 77,000 miles of new pipelines have been built in the last decade and incidents and spills have decreased by approximately 50 percent.

Today’s pipelines are built with state of the art technology utilizing the best materials and trained workers to ensure the safety of the community and environment once operational. Sunoco Logistics, the parent company for Mariner East 2, has committed to use local, highly skilled, union craftsman, which means the pipeline will be built properly.

At a recent event, Anthony Gallagher, business manager for the Steamfitters Local 420, explained the strenuous regulations that must be followed in pipeline construction. “When we are building the pipeline, welders must have each weld inspected to ensure it is correct,” Gallagher said. “Each weld that doesn’t pass inspection must be redone and pass inspection. The pipe must be able to withstand 1 ½ times the operational pressure to pass inspection.”

Additionally, Sunoco Logistics, which is based in southeast Pennsylvania, have been safely operating pipelines in the Commonwealth for decades. In fact, a report by Richard Kuprewicz, a nationally recognized expert in gas and liquid pipeline investigation, risk management, operations, maintenance, emergency response, and safety, issued a report which found that Sunoco Logistics meets and exceeds federal pipeline safety regulations. Sunoco was found to utilize additional integrity management approaches, prudent pump station design, mainline valve placement and actuation, pipeline monitoring, as well as control room procedures, automatic release detection safety systems, emergency notification, and complies with the latest PHMSA Advisory Bulletin concerning pipeline reversals.

Because pipelines are the safest way to transport energy resources, building them with the most highly skilled and trained union workers, and with the latest state of the art technology, it is safe to say that the Mariner East 2 pipeline will be built without cause of threat. Sunoco Logistics has been working on this project since 2012, meeting with landowners, residents, and community leaders along the proposed route, meeting and exceeding all regulatory and permitting requirements.

Mariner East 2 is a positive project for Pennsylvania and deserves our support.