TransCanada recently delivered three sections of large-diameter pipe to the UA Local 325 in Miramichi, N.B., to help the union train a new generation of skilled pipeline welders. This donation on August 19, 2014 is part of a national collaboration between TransCanada and the United Association of Journeymen and Apprentices of the Plumbing and Pipe Fitting Industry (UA) to provide much-needed pipe to eight training facilities across Canada — Miramichi, Toronto, Thunder Bay, Sarnia, Montreal, Dartmouth, Winnipeg and Edmonton.
“We have worked with the UA for nearly a year to develop this partnership. Our company could not be prouder to help young men and women, who are already experienced welders, get the advanced training they need to work in the pipeline industry,” said Energy East Pipeline Project Director Bob Eadie, who led TransCanada’s discussions with the UA.
Depending on the experts
Projects, such as Energy East, will rely on the experience of hundreds of tradesmen and tradeswomen for the construction of the pipeline. TransCanada will only hire the best welders who can deliver quality welds that go above and beyond industry standards. This is why we believe it is critical to prepare a world-class workforce of welders by providing a unique opportunity to train and practise on 40-foot sections of 42-inch-diametre, heavy-walled steel pipe, just like pipe that will be used in the field.
“This is a very important donation from TransCanada. We have a lot of guys ready to go to work. It’s important to get them ready, trained and set to go,” says Bruce Myles, Business Manager at Local 325. “This pipe will allow our journeymen and apprentices to practise the techniques they need to cut and weld the pipe and all aspects of the pipeline work.”
Energy East will connect the oil resources of Western Canada to refineries and port terminals in the East, spreading 4,500 km from Hardisty, Alta., to Saint John, N.B. The $15.7-billion project involves converting 3,000 km of existing natural gas pipe and building 1,600 km of new pipeline.
A quarter of the new pipeline section will be in New Brunswick, where the development and construction of the pipeline will create about 3,700 full-time jobs in all types of roles — from welders, truck drivers and crane operators to dockers and refinery workers. Energy East will also generate $6.5 billion in additional gross domestic product for New Brunswick’s economy over the project’s lifetime. This is nearly three times the amount New Brunswick’s forestry industry is paying in annual salaries.
“It’s one of the best announcements we’ve had in our area for a long time,” says Lorne Amos, head of the Miramichi Valley Business Association, which represents nearly 50 businesses in and around the city of 18,000. “The Energy East Pipeline is a big asset for New Brunswick, and certainly for the businesses in our area who have been preparing for a couple of years for this. We are ready for the actual construction to begin.”
Jobs for hard-working men and women in New Brunswick
Energy East will create jobs for hard-working men and women right here in New Brunswick, keeping them in the province rather than seeing them leave to seek opportunities in Western Canada.
The UA’s Myles says Energy East is a “critical project” for the province because of the current lack of jobs. “We have so many families working out West at the moment, especially the guys out there with their wife and children back here,” he says. “It’s good to get them back home, able to work in their own province and go home to their families in the evening.”