The Oilworker January 2019: Update from the NOBP Chair


NOBP Chair Update

I hope everyone had a joyous holiday and was able to spend some time with family and friends.

As we move closer to the expiration of many of our oil contracts I would ask everyone to remain focused on our everyday obligations at work. 

Many sites have begun discussions on local issues, and need to engage each other on what the pressing issues will encompass. Councils need to maintain communication with the member locals and be sure everyone is aligned throughout negotiations. There is power in unity and the best opportunity for a positive outcome will come from being united in our demands.

Bargaining on National Oil Bargaining Program (NOBP) issues will begin the middle of this month, and we will keep the membership informed on issues through communication from each NOBP region’s policy board member and text messages. Anyone who has not signed up for NOBP text messages can do so by texting ‘OIL’ to 47486.

The USW is looking to achieve an agreement that is beneficial to our members and is cognizant to the needs of our employers. Our members want to be engaged with managing the risks we face at work, and no one is better equipped to do that than the people who are in the units every day and night. Our members’ objective is to make sure that our employers’ facilities are operated in a manner that makes them as profitable as possible and ensures we have a place to continue working.

As we move through this month, watch for flyers and stickers to coincide with events related to the bargaining process. Talk with local leadership and fellow members to be sure everyone understands what is trying to be accomplished at the negotiating table. Remember, there is strength in unity. Happy 2019.

In Solidarity,

Kim Nibarger
NOBP Chair
(Office) 412-562-2403


Exxon Becomes Permian Drill Chief

Exxon Mobil Corp.’s low oil production figures prompted it to start drilling in the Permian Basin, the world’s premier shale field. Now, the company is the basin’s most active driller because it can obtain low-cost oil in months rather than the years required for megaprojects to start producing crude. Other oil companies are following suite. Exxon says its shale wells can make double-digit returns with oil at only $35 a barrel.

Click to read more on Rigzone.

The U.S. Oil Industry's Dirty Little Secret

A New York Times (NYT) investigation revealed that Marathon Petroleum engaged in a stealth public relations campaign to undermine U.S. fuel economy standards so that more fuel could be sold to the public. According to the NYT, Marathon teamed up with the conservative American Legislative Exchange Council to tell the public that there is plenty of American oil and no need for fuel standards.

However, as the author writes, record-breaking U.S. oil production did nothing to lower consumers’ gasoline costs in the third quarter of 2018, and eliminating fuel economy standards as a way to limit demand is self-destructive. Consumers will look for other alternatives—like electric cars.

Click to read more from 


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.

Get bargaining updates via text! Text OIL to the phone number 47486.  

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Press Inquiries

Media Contacts

Communications Director:
Jess Kamm at 412-562-2446

USW@WORK (USW magazine)
Editor Jim McKay

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

Mailing Address

United Steelworkers
Communications Department
60 Blvd. of the Allies
Pittsburgh, PA 15222