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American Petroleum Institute teams up with North America’s Building Trades Unions to enhance safety training for tomorrow’s energy workforce

API, Power Past Impossible, NABTU logos

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WASHINGTON, April 18, 2018 – The American Petroleum Institute (API) and North America’s Building Trades Unions (NABTU) today announced the establishment of the Pipeline Construction Safety Training Program. This landmark program will marry the best practices of both the building trades unions and the natural gas and oil industry into a foundational safety program applicable throughout all energy infrastructure construction.

The groundbreaking initiative will build upon existing NABTU safety courses, which were developed by the NABTU-affiliated Center for Construction Research and Training (CPWR).  The first stage is a customized OSHA 10-hour construction safety class that will incorporate specific pipeline safety information developed jointly by API and NABTU.

“The program offers a way for industry and our union allies to expand the economic opportunities for workers and to help ensure that industry has a skilled and committed workforce capable of building the energy infrastructure our nation needs to meet ever-growing demand,” said Jack Gerard, API president and CEO. “Safety is a shared priority with the common goal of zero incidents. The Pipeline Construction Safety Training Program is an important milestone toward that goal.”

“Our unions represent the safest, most talented, and highly trained skilled craft professionals the world has ever seen. NABTU members from coast to coast are committed to safely and effectively building the energy infrastructure this country needs – and this collaboration with API reinforces that objective,” said Sean McGarvey, President of North America's Building Trades Unions. “We welcome the opportunity to work with the oil and natural gas industry to help our members be better equipped with the necessary skills to not just attain a job, but to find a successful career in construction. We have long been focused on creating opportunities to strengthen and expand America’s middle class – this effort will lead to growth in America’s economy and energy security alike.”

The training is part of NABTU’s current offerings to its members – specifically apprentices and journeymen. The initial program will be available to pipeline construction personnel from the Laborers (LiUNA), the Operating Engineers (IUOE), and the United Association (UA). The course will provide industry specific training that includes fire safety, safety in confined spaces, and fall hazards. An API-U certificate – recognized industry wide as the gold standard for training in oil and gas – will be issued upon completion of the course.

This piece, as well as future supplements to the program, will be designed by a joint committee of experts from Building Trades, Oil & Gas, and Training & Apprenticeships programs.

API is the only national trade association representing all facets of the oil and natural gas industry, which supports 10.3 million U.S. jobs and nearly 8 percent of the U.S. economy. API’s more than 625 members include large integrated companies, as well as exploration and production, refining, marketing, pipeline, and marine businesses, and service and supply firms. They provide most of the nation’s energy and are backed by a growing grassroots movement of more than 40 million Americans.

North America’s Building Trades Unions is an alliance of 14 national and international unions in the building and construction industry that collectively represent over 3 million skilled craft professionals in the United States and Canada. Each year, our unions and our signatory contractor partners invest over $1 billion in private sector money to fund and operate over 1,900 apprenticeship training and education facilities across North America that produce the safest, most highly trained, and productive skilled craft workers found anywhere in the world.

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