Over the last few years, politicians and the American public have been debating over the right way to reenergize our national economy and bring back a time of national prosperity, in a way that helps all segments of our society.
Since 2012, the Progressive Policy Institute (PPI) has been analyzing a critical driver of the national economy, companies with high domestic investment, and published an annual report entitled U.S. Investment Heroes, which documents their findings. As PPI stated, “sustainable economic growth, job creation, and rising real wages require domestic business investment.” Energy companies have had a large percentage of the list to themselves, and for good reason. Energy production requires a skilled labor force and taps into various parts of the economy. Many experts have credited the energy revolution and low energy costs for American businesses as the reason why the American economy was able to weather the recession to the extent that it did.
On the list of the top 15 “Investment Heroes”, 7 are occupied by energy companies. Among them is Energy Transfer Equity, a company in the same family as Energy Transfer Partners, the constructors of the planned Dakota Access Pipeline with U.S. based investments, totaling over $5.3 billion.
The MAIN Coalition has advocated for increased investment in energy infrastructure in the Midwest for many reasons, one of which being the stimulus potential for domestic and regional markets. The Dakota Access Pipeline is a great example of how U.S. domestic investment can benefit American workers. American steel mills were booked to capacity in order to produce the pipe for the project, and Midwestern contractors have been tapped to do the job, which they have pledged to complete using 100% union labor, sourced in large part from local union halls.
As the South Dakota Public Utility Commission kicks off its ten day hearing to look at the pipeline’s application, it should be worth reiterating the positive economic effects that such a pipeline would bring to the Midwest. There is no reason why the billions of dollars that are invested into our national economy by American companies cannot benefit the families and communities in our region.
Read the full report here.