Commonwealth business chambers and labor groups launched the Pennsylvania Energy Infrastructure Alliance, a coalition supporting expedient approval for statewide energy infrastructure reform, today.
Designed to raise awareness of the value of private investment in energy infrastructure, the alliance supports the belief that the availability of low-cost fuels will strengthen the region's economic future, and ultimately the nation's energy independence, as the area’s shale gas reserves are developed.
“Low-cost fuel for heating and for fueling the greater Philadelphia region's growing industries won't be realized unless new infrastructure is developed," Delaware County Chamber of Commerce President Trish McFarland, a founding member of the alliance, said. "Our region has an exceptional opportunity with new pipeline projects to invest in our long-term future."
Citing the potential economic benefits of pipeline projects, such as tens of thousands of jobs, millions in annual tax revenue and benefits to existing industries, members are optimistic.
"Pennsylvania's natural resources give us a competitive edge in the new energy economy,” James T. Kunz Jr., business manager for the International Union of Operating Engineers Local 66, said. "Local skilled workers are excited to go to work every day to build these projects safely and efficiently – a job we take great pride in."
Founding members include the Washington County Chamber of Commerce, Delaware County Chamber of Commerce, International Union of Operating Engineers Local 66 and Laborers International Union of North America.
The alliance intends to educate legislators, its own members and the public on the benefits of investing to modernize Pennsylvania’s infrastructure and strengthen its economic future while keeping citizens safe.