Keystone pipeline safe, beneficial, March 17
I have read the headlines and stories about the protests and controversy involving TransCanada’s Keystone Pipeline Gulf Coast Project and what it means to Texas. As a concerned citizen and chairman of the Tyler Chamber of Commerce Energy Committee, I wanted to know more facts. So a recently, several of us toured the pipeline construction. What we saw and heard was impressive, on both the economic benefits and on the great care TransCanada is taking in building a “state of the art” pipeline.
The construction yard closest to Tyler is near Jacksonville and roughly 750 workers report for duty each day. We learned that each of the three pipeline sections or spreads is spending nearly $2 million per month locally to buy construction related goods and services. Additionally, all those workers need to buy everyday items that anyone needs: groceries, clothes, fuel, housing, etc. It’s estimated that on average, each worker spends $2,500 a month for these expenses, which is nearly another $2 million they’ve been spending in the Tyler area each month.
When on site, we saw how careful the workers are and that they’re certainly not cutting any corners when it comes to safety. We noticed each weld has several passes and is inspected with high-tech equipment to ensure they meet specifications. It was clear that TransCanada does everything they can to restore the land to the way it was before construction. Everything is carefully documented, and we saw how every movement is monitored, inspected and regulated.
This pipeline that’s under construction in Texas has been a target for a variety protests. As someone who has taken the time to see it for myself and seek facts, I can say that I’m satisfied that it is a first class operation that is providing strong benefits to the region.