Pipelines Deliver Shale’s Economic, Environmental Benefits

As our region’s pipeline infrastructure continues to mature, more consumers, manufacturers, and natural gas end-users are realizing shale’s economic and environmental benefits. In fact, Pa. Manufacturers’ Association (PMA) president David Taylor recently said that expanding natural gas access for consumer and manufacturers is “key to unlocking the competitive advantage of abundant Pennsylvania natural gas.”

Expanding this infrastructure is also critical to meet the nation’s growing electricity needs since “America’s power grid needs natural gas now more than ever”. What’s more, natural gas-fired power plants are now generating 35 percent of America’s electricity, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration. Plus, a recent analysis projected that “over the next five years, demand for natural gas is expected to grow about 25 percent.”

Continued pipeline construction  – such as the PennEast project – delivers significant consumer and manufacturing savings, benefits our environment, and creates good-paying jobs, many for our region’s building trades unions. According to a Drexel University study, the PennEast pipeline is projected to create 12,000 jobs and have a $1.62 billion economic impact across Pennsylvania and New Jersey. Likewise, Sunoco Logistics’ pipeline projects are poised to generate nearly $4.2 billion in economic activity for the Commonwealth and support an estimated 30,000 construction jobs, according to one study.

Here’s what they’re saying about shale’s end-use benefits:

  • “In Every Way That Matters, Energy is Life”: The [PennEast] pipeline will deliver approximately 1 billion cubic feet of natural gas per day to customers in eastern Pa. and N.J.. … Not to be understated was the pipeline’s affect on the state’s economy, said David Taylor, president of the PMA. “In every way that matters, energy is life,” Taylor said. “America’s high level of energy consumption, ever high and rising quality of life. … I’ll never apologize for that. That’s what we want for our families and our communities.” If PennEast is able to connect the region’s natural gas assets, the price for the end user is less. (Times Leader, 9/24/15)
  • Pipelines “Key to Unlocking the Competitive Advantage”: Columbia Pipeline Group said its proposal to build the $2 billion, 165-mile Mountaineer Xpress in W. Va. entered a pre-filing phase before the FERC. …The pipeline would connect processing points and other lines, “providing producers in the Marcellus and Utica shale areas new transportation options to move gas out of the capacity-constrained supply basin and into the interstate market.” … The $1 billion, 118-mile system of 36-inch pipes would move gas from shale fields north of Wilkes Barre to NJ and the Phila. suburbs. “New pipeline capacity like that of PennEast is the key to unlocking the competitive advantage of abundant Pa. natural gas,” said PMA’s David Taylor. … Industry leaders say such pipelines will deliver cheaper and cleaner-burning gas to areas where high demand and low supply have boosted energy prices. (Tribune-Review, 9/25/15)
  • PennEast Pipeline to “Deliver Low Gas Prices, Stable Electricity Rates”: A group of N.J. and Pa. utilities moved forward with a $1 billion project to tap into Marcellus Shale natural gas production, saying the new pipeline would deliver low gas prices, stable electricity rates, and a manufacturing renaissance to the region. … “This safe, state-of-the-art infrastructure project will not only help meet the region’s energy demands; it can power N.J. and Pa.’s economies for years to come,” said Peter Terranova, chairman of PennEast’s board. (Philadelphia Inquirer, 9/25/15)
  • Natural Gas Infrastructure to Delivers Consumer Energy Savings: New England has isolated itself from the economic and environmental benefits of the country’s shale gas revolution for far too long. … Prices in ’s Marcellus Shale region in the winter have been a fraction of what they are in New England, and the result is higher energy prices for New England consumers. New England consumers can expect this trend to continue until more pipeline is built. … Rather than “kicking the can down the road” with the state’s infrastructure needs, MA should be seizing this opportunity. Fortunately, business and political leaders throughout New England are standing up for the importance of expanding natural gas infrastructure. (Boston Globe column, 9/28/15)

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