Labor Leader: Let’s Start Building Dakota Access

After the unanimous decision of the Iowa Utilities Board to approve the application of the Dakota Access Pipeline, labor member Ryan Hollinrake, an outspoken advocate of the project’s benefits for Iowa’s skilled trade members, took to the pages of The Des Moines Register and Newton Daily News to encourage a quick start to the project:

Now that the Iowa Utilities Board has approved the Dakota Access pipeline’s 343-mile segment across the state, let’s hope this environmentally sound and economically valuable project can get started without further delay. The IUB deserves credit for its thorough research on the pipeline and the extensive efforts it made to give Iowans a chance to voice their opinions.

Despite some loud and well- organized protest groups, it’s pretty clear that a majority of Iowans support this project. That includes 80 percent of the landowners whose property will be crossed by the underground pipeline. Iowans tend to be practical people and most of us recognize that the DAPL is a multi-billion dollar investment in vital infrastructure that will provide vital public benefits that is financed with private funds.

The nation needs to expand its energy transport network and Iowa can certainly benefit from the $1 billion investment being made in our state. Additionally, the $27 million in property taxes will certainly help our state provide necessary services for communities along the route. It appears, that once again, the people have indeed spoken.

It is estimated that between 2,000 and 4,000 workers will be assembling the Iowa portion of the Dakota Access Pipeline. Energy Transfer Partners has agreed to source at least half of the workers from local union halls.