Union Blues And Greens
Much to the consternation of environmentalists, unions are flexing their pro-drilling muscle:
The increasing use of union construction labor has given energy companies a powerful ally as drilling is debated in communities nationwide. Many Republicans have been pro-drilling, but now some unions traditionally associated with Democrats are using their political clout to urge politicians to reject bans on pipelines or drilling.The economic benefits do tend to have an impact on one's outlook...
For example, LIUNA has urged members of Congress to support liquefied natural gas exports and regional gas pipeline expansions, and union members plan to participate in a pro-drilling rally in Pennsylvania's capital next month.
"The unions are powerful and influential," said David Masur, director of Penn Environment, which has been critical of the drilling boom.
The Marcellus and Utica shale fields, rich in natural gas and oil, lie deep underneath large parts of Pennsylvania, Ohio and West Virginia, and more than 6,000 new wells have been drilled there over the last five years.