Study: Mariner East To Add $4.2 Billion To Pennsylvania Economy

July 2015, Vol.242, No. 7

P&GJ Staff Report

Sunoco Logistics’ Mariner East projects are expected to add up to $4.2 billion to Pennsylvania’s economy and create 300-400 permanent jobs, according to a study by Philadelphia-based Econsult Solutions, Inc. released Feb. 5.

Commissioned by Sunoco Logistics, the economic forecast projected construction of the projects will generate $23 million in personal income tax in the state, as well bringing in $62 million in tax revenues from vendors, employees and related activities.

Sunoco Logistics plans to invest about $3 billion in Pennsylvania for the Mariner East projects to transport NGLs from the western part of the state, West Virginia and eastern Ohio to its repurposed Marcus Hook Industrial Complex, a former oil refinery, which will be used for storage, processing and distribution of NGLs. The projects include the development of a 50-mile pipeline that connects with an existing pipeline, construction of a new 350-mile pipeline.

Mariner East 2 is expected to provide an initial capacity of 275,000 bpd of NGLs, such as propane, butane and ethane, while Mariner East 1 will provide 70,000 bpd of takeaway capacity from the shale regions. The new facilities at Marcus Hook will store, chill, process and distribute propane, butane and ethane.

The study found construction of the Mariner East projects will also support about 30,000 direct, indirect and induced jobs throughout the construction period, including direct jobs in the construction industry, as well as architectural and engineering jobs, wholesale trade business jobs, and professional, scientific and technical service jobs.

“Our numbers indicate that the Mariner East project will significantly affect the state’s economy,” said Stephen P. Mullin, president of Econsult. “You just don’t see companies investing $3 billion on capital projects in Pennsylvania every day.”

In addition to construction benefits, Econsult projected NGL transport, processing and distribution from the Mariner East projects will create a “recurring economic impact from ongoing operations.”

Although the total expenditure for operations at the Marcus Hook Industrial Complex has not been finalized, Sunoco expects to spend as much as $90 million annually to operate the pipeline projects beginning in 2017.

Throughout Pennsylvania, the total economic impact of the projects’ ongoing service is estimated to be between $100-150 million annually, supporting earnings of $22-33 million. Ongoing operations and spillover effects will generate between $800,000-1.2 million in annual tax revenue to the state, the study said.

The Mariner East projects will increase the locally available domestic supply of propane for both residential and commercial customers as well as providing other NGLs to spur regional manufacturing.

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