Even before the first pipe segments are laid into the ground, the Dakota Access Pipeline’s investments are already generating benefits for businesses in the states along the route, opines a recent column in the Springfield, IL-based State Journal-Register. Bill Fleischli, the executive vice president of the Illinois Petroleum Marketers Association points out that the benefits to the regional supply chain can already be felt:
It has been barely two months since the Illinois Commerce Commission (ICC) approved the Dakota Access Pipeline but we are already seeing some of the valuable economic benefits this critical infrastructure project promises to bring our state. Construction of pipeline is set to begin this spring and Illinois-based John Deere and Caterpillar have already received commitments exceeding $200 million for heavy machinery and related equipment needed for the project. This sizable investment will stimulate job creation and business growth throughout the entire supply chain necessary to build these huge machines.
That heavy machinery will be soon joined at work sites all across the Midwest by thousands of skilled laborers, at least half of whom will be sourced from local union halls. With the pipeline application being approved for North Dakota, South Dakota, and Illinois, it is up to the Iowa Utility Board members to determine when the men and women of the Midwest will get to work.