The Oilworker: August 2019


August Update from the NOBP Chair

Dear Brothers and Sisters,

As bargaining for NOBP winds down, Mike Smith and I traveled to a number of locals and attended council meetings asking for feedback on the recent round of negotiations.

We received suggestions for improving the process next time, as well as advice on refining the strategies that worked well. We also got feedback about the Building Power trainings we did in advance of this round of bargaining and are working to ensure that they are available at as many locations as possible prior to the next time we head to the table.

The USW has also been working with a variety of stakeholders at Philadelphia Energy Solutions (PES) in the aftermath of the fire that occurred June 21, trying to secure a future for the facility.

If PES closes, it will be a huge blow not only to our members but the community as a whole.

One of our immediate goals has been helping people find jobs at other locations within the industry.  Several other USW employers attended a job fair recently and were impressed with the caliber of talent they met from PES.  Hopefully, we can get as many of these folks as possible back to work soon.

I hope the summer season is good for everyone and we don’t suffer too many hurricanes, floods or fires. Try and spend some quality time with your friends and family and put work on the back burner if you get a chance.

In the meantime, please check out the stories below for important news about the industry.

In solidarity,

Kim Nibarger
NOBP Chair


Click to read more from
Enbridge Moves Forward with Tunnel Plans, Despite Lawsuit

Enbridge Energy is continuing its plans to dig a tunnel under the Straits of Mackinac in northern Michigan, last month sending a drilling vessel into the straits to take geological samples. This is despite opposition from state Democrats, including a pending lawsuit. The tunnel would replace an existing pipeline transporting oil and gas liquids from Superior, Wis., to Sarnia, Ontario.

Click to read more from Reuters.
Fight Over Waivers Escalates as Small Refineries Threaten to Sue EPA

The fight over biofuel waivers escalated last month as small refineries threaten to sue the EPA if it fails to issue waiver rulings in a timely fashion. Waivers are important for small refineries that do not have the resources to blend ethanol into gasoline in compliance with the U.S.’s biofuel laws.

Click to read more from the AP.
Montana, North Dakota Ask Trump Administration to Overrule Washington State Law on Oil Shipments

Attorneys general for Montana and North Dakota filed a petition with the U.S. Department of Transportation in July, pushing back against a new Washington state rule requiring oil shipped by rail through the state to have more volatile gasses removed.

Proponents of the rule say it makes the transportation safer, but opponents argue that it cuts Pacific Northwest refineries off from crude in the Bakken region on the Montana-North Dakota boarder.


Has your local organized a group of workers, won an award, participated in a community event, won an arbitration, helped achieve a legislative victory, settled a safety issue, etc.?

Please contact Lynne Hancock at, (Office) 412-562-2442 or (cell) 615-828-6169.

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Press Inquiries

Media Contacts

Communications Director:
Jess Kamm at 412-562-2446

USW@WORK (USW magazine)
Editor R.J. Hufnagel

For industry specific inquiries,
Call USW Communications at 412-562-2442

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