Unions turning against greens on fracking
The diminishing private sector portion of the union movement is turning on their Democrat coalition allies, environmentalists, waking up to the fact that well-paying jobs are created by permitting fracking. Already hip to the notion that the Keystone Pipeline would employ a lot of union members, unions in Pennsylvania in particular now realixe there is a jobs bonanza for them in domestic energy production.
Kevin Begos of AP reports:
After early complaints that out-of-state firms got the most jobs, some local construction trade workers and union members in Pennsylvania, Ohio and West Virginia say they're now benefiting in a big way from the Marcellus and Utica Shale oil and gas boom.
That vocal support from blue-collar workers complicates efforts by environmentalists to limit the drilling process known as fracking.
"The shale became a lifesaver and a lifeline for a lot of working families," said Dennis Martire, the mid-Atlantic regional manager for the Laborers' International Union, or LIUNA, which represents workers in numerous construction trades.
Martire said that as huge quantities of natural gas were extracted from the vast shale reserves over the last five years, union work on large pipeline jobs in Pennsylvania and West Virginia has increased significantly. In 2008, LIUNA members worked about 400,000 hours on such jobs; by 2012, that had risen to 5.7 million hours.
Nationally, the Bureau of Labor Statistics says total employment in the nation's oil and gas industry rose from about 120,000 in early 2004 to about 208,000 last month. Less than 10 percent of full-time oil and gas industry workers are represented by unions.
There are many more jobs that are created, in industries ranging from drilling and transportation equipment to trucking, to restaurants and many other spin-offs.
Fracking is one of the greatest boons to America in my lifetime. In addition to all the domestic benefits, it disempowers the Muslim oil powers responsible for the spread of worldwide jihad, and Russia’s Putin. Only a msall portion of the fracking potential in America has been exploited yet, with substantial rsources in New York State and California still off-limits due to the influence of wealthy green donors, many of whom profit from green energy subsidies.
At last the unions are starting to catch on.