Comments before the:
PENNSYLVANIA DEPARTMENT OF ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION
MARINER EAST 2
August 16, 2016
Pennsylvania Farmshow Complex & Expo Center
2300 North Cameron St.
Harrisburg, PA 17110
CARL A. MARRARA
Vice President, Government Affairs
Pennsylvania Manufacturers’ Association
My name is Carl Marrara and I am the Vice President of Government Affairs for 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 Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection, to express our support for the Sunoco Logistics Mariner East 2 project.
Manufacturers in particular depend on the affordable dry and liquid gas, and specifically gas products, to remain globally competitive. Total natural gas demand is poised to increase by 40 percent over the next decade and researchers at the National Association of Manufacturers found the key drivers of this demand will be manufacturing and power generation. Therefore, projects such as Mariner East 2 are so vitally important to the Commonwealth’s manufacturing sector.
The Mariner East 2 project will transport propane, ethane, and butane – the feedstock, the raw component of modern manufacturing. Many of the products our human hands touch everyday come from these essential fuels; every plastic, coating, rubber, foam product such as plastic containers, sanitary items, paints, and cosmetics.
Affordable natural gas and gas products such as propane, ethane, and butane are simply not getting to market because Pennsylvania lacks a sufficient pipeline network. According to the Marcellus Shale Coalition (MSC), of the 9048 wells in Pennsylvania that reported to the Department of Environmental Protection as of last December, 6618 are producing gas. That leaves 2430 that are in some in-between status: not completed, shut in, and inactive over the past year. Specifically, there are 562 wells inactive and 806 listed as “drilling not completed”, while 997 are shut-in. It has been estimated that approximately 25-30% of the Marcellus wells drilled to date still do not have pipeline takeaway capacity. Projects such as Mariner East 2 open and expand markets, create entire new industries, and sustain and stabilize the energy industry than manufacturers so desperately rely on.
Many today will speak to the number of jobs created and the massive economic investments associated with this project. But I am here to tell you that the economic impact of this project will have lasting results, far beyond the construction of the pipeline in a revitalized manufacturing sector. According to a recent study by the National Association of Manufacturers and IHS Economics:
“The improved competitive positioning of industries in the manufacturing sector is shaping state and local economic development strategies across the country. Increased supplies of natural gas (and gas products), especially at lower delivered prices, enhances the competitiveness of economies by making them more attractive to manufacturing activities that are large, and intensive users of natural gas such as chemicals, food, paper, and metals. The close proximity of existing clusters of manufacturing establishments to increased natural gas supplies can generate new pipeline-related economic development, often because of the availability of direct connections to a new or expanded gas pipeline… Expansions of natural gas pipeline capacity are also needed to enable the construction of new electric generating plants. In addition to providing key inputs for the construction of pipelines, the manufacturing sector will also benefit economically from the capital expenditures for new electric generating plants and for facilities used to process and store natural gas liquids. In a nutshell, the combination of increased access to shale gas and the transmission lines that move that affordable energy to manufacturers across America meant 1.9 million jobs in 2015 alone.”
Pennsylvania knows energy independence – it always has through timber and coal - and now we have the opportunity to strengthen America’s energy leadership again through abundant, efficient, and clean burning natural gas. Pennsylvania’s natural gas revolution is giving our manufacturers new momentum with abundant cost-competitive energy and feedstock for chemical engineering. But to fully realize the potential of shale gas, Pennsylvania needs robust infrastructure, transmission, and refinement. That is why we support the Mariner East 2 project and hope that you will too.