By Bill Gerhard
In today’s economy, many people are discouraged by the lack of opportunities we have to find a job that will just simply pay the bills. And many of the new jobs being created in the global economy are part-time jobs and not the full-time jobs that we hope to see.
Even though Americans are frustrated, we have to take advantage of the job-creating opportunities that lie in front of us today. The Keystone XL Pipeline looks to create good jobs that Americans have been searching for.
Our mission at the Iowa State Building and Construction Trades Council is to contribute to the continuity of employment and economic security of organized construction workers in Iowa. One of these opportunities for both employment and economic security is the Keystone XL Pipeline. The pipeline construction will create 20,000 American construction and manufacturing jobs, increase our energy security, and increase economic activity.
Through a Project Labor Agreement, labor organizations would provide a capable, well-trained, and ready labor force in the United States to perform the work at the Keystone XL’s electrically driven pump stations. The tremendous job-creating potential for this project is why so many in the labor community are standing up and voicing their support.
Ongoing technology advancements and increased standards have ensured our ability to safely and efficiently develop our domestic resources. Increasing our access to domestic sources of oil and natural gas will increase revenue and create thousands of jobs. It is imperative that we move forward with the Keystone XL Pipeline, and help ensure that the Project Labor Agreement jobs currently in limbo are made a reality.
Energy producers of all forms have the ability to access a great amount of resources and are already some of the largest contributors to our economy. Not only do they have a positive impact on our country’s energy supply, but they also create jobs and revenue that are much needed in today’s economy. Being sensible with what we have domestically and realistically investing in new forms of energy need to be a priority to all elected officials in this country.
Not only should we educate our fellow Iowans on the opportunities that Keystone XL Pipeline is providing for us and our country, but we should continue to remind our elected officials. Voice your support for job-creating projects in growing industries like the energy industry, as it would help America as a whole.
l Bill Gerhard is the president of the Iowa State Building & Construction Trades Council. Comments: firstname.lastname@example.org