Comments before the:
UNITED STATES OF AMERICA
FEDERAL ENERGY REGULATORY COMMISSION
Transcontinental Gas Pipe Line Company, LLC
Docket No. CP15-138-000
ATLANTIC SUNRISE PROJECT
Tuesday, June 14
Lebanon Valley College
101 N. College Avenue
Annville, PA 17003
DAVID N. TAYLOR
Pennsylvania Manufacturers’ Association
My name is David N. Taylor and I am the President of the Pennsylvania Manufacturers’ Association. We are the statewide, nonprofit trade organization that represents the people who make things here in our commonwealth; generating over $79 billion annually in state gross product, employing 575,000 hardworking Pennsylvanians on the plant floor, and supporting supply, distribution, and retail networks that sustain millions of additional Pennsylvania jobs. I am honored to be here today, commenting before the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, to express our support for the Williams’ Atlantic Sunrise project, Docket No. CP15-138-000.
The ‘shale effect’ on manufacturing is taking shape, making the United States, and more specifically Pennsylvania, a more attractive locale for business investment. According to a new analysis by Pricewaterhouse Coopers, shale gas development could have the following impacts on US manufacturing overall:
- Annual cost savings of $22.3 billion in 2030 and $34.1 billion in 2040.
- 930,000 shale gas-driven manufacturing jobs created by 2030 and 1.41 million by 2040.
In Pennsylvania however, our lack of pipeline infrastructure does not meet the needs of gas producers or downstream end users. That is why projects such as the Williams Atlantic Sunrise project are so important to the economic vitality of our commonwealth.
Besides being an excellent, clean burning, affordable fuel source – natural gas is the feedstock for all of modern manufacturing – ethane becoming ethylene, butane becoming butylene, and propane becoming propylene. These products, manufactured good themselves, become products like polyethylene - arguably the most important input in modern manufacturing. Companies will locate where the materials are readily available and most affordable. Pennsylvania’s abundant, reliable, and cost-effective energy market will be coupled with the logistical ease of these manufacturing building blocks and will inevitably make Pennsylvania economically competitive once again.
However, we can’t stress the role of infrastructure delivering new supplies to new communities, as well as reinforcing existing distribution systems to allow additional load/growth. This mission of deploying every rivet of infrastructure has become our number one priority at our association and we are excited to be here today to bring awareness to this important topic and to hear firsthand from those in the sector working to make these needed connections.
From a micro assessment, this region of Pennsylvania simply does not have the necessary infrastructure to connect Pennsylvania gas production with end users. It has been estimated that approximately 25-30% of the Marcellus wells drilled to date still do not have pipeline takeaway capacity. We are confident that projects like the Atlantic Sunrise Project will change that.
From a macro perspective, American energy leadership is needed to bolster our allies and thwart our adversaries. With the United States having recently become the world leader in natural gas production, surpassing Russia in 2011, Pennsylvania’s natural gas boom played a paramount role, as we are now the second highest producing states behind Texas. But we must be able to transport the gas to refine it, manufacturer other products from it, and then export it to our friends and allies throughout the world. Only with more pipeline infrastructure can our global leadership flourish.
From a personal viewpoint, I currently have a gas pipeline that runs through my property in Conewago Township in Dauphin County. Once a year the company attends do the vegetative growth around the area where the pipeline runs with minimal disruption. The deer, wild turkeys, and (unfortunately as our dogs discovered) skunks populate our property without discrimination. Companies such as Williams plan the routes and execute the deployment of these pipelines with surgical precision so to not negatively impact the existing landscape. There is a sense of pride in knowing that our property serves as small part of the overall economic vitality of our community, our commonwealth, and our country.
Therefore, for the aforementioned reasons and countless more, we at the Pennsylvania Manufacturers’ Association respectfully urge the approval and immediate construction of the Atlantic Sunrise Project.