Operating Engineers Support New Direction for Trans Mountain Pipeline

The International Union of Operating Engineers (IUOE) expresses its support for the Government of Canada’s decision to purchase Kinder Morgan’s Trans Mountain pipeline and the construction of the Trans Mountain Expansion Project.

The Trans Mountain Expansion Project is a 1,150-kilometer (715 mile), C$6.8 billion expansion of an existing pipeline from Alberta through to the Vancouver-area community of Burnaby. The expansion would add about 980 kilometres of new pipeline and 12 new pump stations. By twinning the existing pipeline, the expansion project would increase capacity from 300,000 barrels a day to 890,000 barrels a day.

We applaud the Government of Canada’s decision to recognize the importance of getting nation-building projects underway, and we look forward to working with the Government to ensure that the highly-skilled, highly-trained Canadian tradespeople get the first opportunity to build this project. Moving forward, we hope the Government will guarantee that the construction of this project will go to the contractors and workers that have already built almost all the interprovincial pipelines in Canada.

Our members have safely built the vast majority of all National Energy Board approved pipelines over the past 60 years. When we build and maintain pipelines, they are built right, built safe, and built to last. In keeping with our long and proud history of pipeline construction, our various Locals across Canada invested significantly to upgrade and enhance capacity in our training facilities to ensure the next generation of skilled tradespeople are available and ready to work on Canadian infrastructure projects, such as this one. We are eager to work with the Government of Canada to find employment through a Project Labour Agreement, to guarantee the best trained and best skilled workers are involved in this national project.

IUOE will work with the Government of Canada, and any future owners of Trans Mountain, to ensure that the Trans Mountain Expansion Project is built to the highest safety and environmental standards by the most skilled Canadian workforce possible. “Our membership’s commitment to safety, the environment and best construction practices when it comes to pipeline construction is priority number one. We build it right the first time,” said Lionel Railton, Canadian Director of the IUOE.

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