dck worldwide and Leech Tishman Bring Together Industry Leaders to Discuss Local Economic Impact of Building Ethylene “Cracking” Facilities

PITTSBURGH, PA – On June 5, 2012, a roundtable was hosted by construction company, dck worldwide, and law firm, Leech Tishman, that attracted more than 50 attendees to discuss the economic impact of building ethylene “cracking” facilities in Pennsylvania.  The forum, which included a select audience of regional industry executives, coincided with the announcement of Governor Corbett’s plan to provide Royal Dutch Shell, and others in the olefin supply chain, with tax breaks for the construction of such facilities in the Commonwealth.

The event, held at the Duquesne Club, was attended by a cross-section of industries, including construction, energy, environmental, transportation, and financial and other ancillary services.  Government representatives at the roundtable included commissioners Tony Amadio and Joe Spanik from Beaver County, the planned site of the Royal Dutch Shell gas processing facility. 

Hosts Stephen D’Angelo, CEO of dck worldwide, and Pete Fuscaldo, Managing Partner of Leech Tishman, both stressed the importance of developing strategic business partnerships and felt that in addition to meeting with companies that may be associated with the building of the cracker plant, this forum offered the opportunity to understand the impacts of this project on our region.

Michael Williams, former chairman of the Texas Railroad Commission, the regulatory body for oil and gas development and production in Texas, shared Texas’ experience with gas production and the economic impact of building ethylene “cracking” facilities.  Williams served in the administrations of Presidents H.W. Bush, George W. Bush, and Ronald Reagan.  He won three statewide elections to the powerful Texas Railroad Commission, overseeing all energy regulation in the State of Texas, and served on this body for ten years, chairing it for six. 

Williams compared the recent development of the Marcellus Shale to the boom created in 2002 by the development of the Barnett Shale formation in north Texas, which continues to produce 7% of the country’s natural gas.  Citing the economic studies of the independent Perryman Group, the Barnett Shale, Williams reviewed, has created 109,000 jobs and $80 billion output generated to date in Texas and serve as industry predictors of an estimated annual output of more than $7 billion per year over the next 10 years.  Cracker construction, Williams said, “will create jobs in every neighborhood,” referring to the array of professional and journeyman skills needed for construction of roads, pipelines, and buildings, and in support and auxiliary services like health care, hospitality, engineering, and sanitation. 

Also speaking at the forum was James Seif, former Secretary of the Department of Environmental Protection in Tom Ridge’s administration.  Seif pronounced the cracking facility construction and associated shale gas development as “Pennsylvania’s biggest economic opportunity of my lifetime.”  He said the cracking facility construction presented an opportunity for firms in the industry to avoid the stigma of the environmental mistakes of the past, citing the forestry era “cut and burn” and coal era “dig and dump” approaches.  He suggested industry leaders can build public support through transparency; countering the “drill and spill” characterization of energy development; and highlighting environmentally sound practices.

About dck worldwide, LLC

dck worldwide, LLC, is a global construction company with 90 years of history that specializes in developing, managing, and building highly complex projects.  Headquartered in Pittsburgh, dck has built  landmark projects for both public and private clients throughout the continental U.S. and in places such as Hawaii, Guam, and the Caribbean.  The company’s energy projects have included gas turbine projects, natural gas-fired power plants, resource recovery facilities, air pollution control retrofits, and co-generation facilities. For more information call 412.394-1000 or visit www.dckww.com.

About Leech Tishman

Leech Tishman is a firm dedicated to providing full-service commercial legal services to individuals, businesses, and institutions. We combine a deep understanding of our clients’ and their businesses with skilled legal counsel to find solutions. We offer legal services in alternative dispute resolution, bankruptcy & creditors’ rights, construction, corporate, employment, energy, environmental, safety & toxic torts, estates & trusts, government relations, insurance coverage & corporate risk mitigation, litigation, real estate, and taxation. For more information call 412.261.1600 or visit www.leechtishman.com