You can help save more than 250 good, family-sustaining United Steelworkers (USW) refinery jobs, along with more than 2,000 other related jobs, by signing a USW petition urging state and local officials to work with Tesoro Corp. to find a buyer for its Kapolei, Hawaii, refinery.
The company announced earlier this year that it planned to close the refinery in Oahu, where the USW represents some 250 production and maintenance workers. Click here to sign the petition.
Earlier this month, Gov. Neil Abercrombie (D) announced the formation of a committee to examine the closure’s impact on the state and to explore efforts to save the refinery, including its sale. USW Vice President Gary Beevers and USW District 12 Director Robert LaVenture write:
It doesn’t make sense to exclude the USW on the governor’s committee when we represent the majority of workers who will be affected by the refinery closure….Our union has shown it can partner with local, state and federal officials to save jobs and protect the local economy.
The USW successfully partnered with local, state and federal officials last year on the East Coast to encourage Sunoco and ConocoPhillips to proactively sell their refineries, address regulatory issues in a sustainable way and attract qualified buyers to operate two large refineries.
In addition to the economic impact of the closure, the pair warns there are also environmental concerns.
Allowing this refinery to shut down only to create space for increased imports from less regulated refiners in India and Asia does nothing to address our shared concern for the environment. In fact, offshoring refining capacity will not only have a negative impact on the state’s economy, it will dramatically increase the environmental impacts of oil consumption.