A proposed crude oil pipeline expansion spanning much of South Louisiana would spur more than $829 million in new economic activity this year, create more than 4,000 jobs and generate more than $400 million in new wages, according to a study by the Louisiana State University (LSU) Center for Energy Studies (CES) funded by one of the project's developers.
"The Bayou Bridge Pipeline will help expand Louisiana's energy economy by creating jobs and leveraging existing in-state energy infrastructure such as refineries, processing and storage assets," David Dismukes, director of the LSU research center, stated in a press release. "When completed, the Bayou Bridge Pipeline will further diversify Louisiana's crude oil supplies and provide new growth in both the immediate and long-term."
In mid-2015, Phillips 66, Energy Transfer Partners (ETP) and Sunoco Logistics Partners formed a joint venture to build Bayou Bridge to deliver heavy and light crudes from terminals in Nederland, Texas, to Lake Charles, La. The JV partners completed that first phase of the project last spring. Now they are seeking U.S. Army Corps of Engineers approval for a second phase to extend the pipeline approximately 163 miles eastward from Lake Charles to St. James in the New Orleans area – in the vicinity of extensive terminal and refining infrastructure.
The second phase would link St. James to Midwest and Gulf Coast oil hubs, according to proponents. According to the study, which ETP commissioned and Dismukes co-authored with CES colleague Gregory Upton, most of the project's job creation would occur during construction. The study's authors found that construction would generate 1,529 direct jobs, 552 indirect jobs and 2,000 induced jobs. During its first five years of operations the pipeline would support 12 direct and seven induced full-time equivalent jobs, according to the study. In addition, the authors observed the expansion would yield additional benefits for Louisiana's refiners and petrochemical manufacturers.
The expansion, which would cross the Atchafalaya Basin and seven other watersheds, has also generated opposition from environmental advocacy groups.