Fracing Disclosure Main Concern In Senate Energy Bill; Incentives For NG Vehicles Included

September 2010 Vol. 65 No. 9

Lisa Beal, director, environment and construction policy, INGAA, says, "It is impossible for me to say definitively how much PCB remains in the system, but we can say that since the ban no new PCBs have been introduced into the system and when found, they are removed. Hence the overall mass of PCB is constantly decreasing."

Pamela A. Lacey, senior managing counsel, environment, American Gas Association, states that if the EPA insists on eliminating all PCBs by 2020, companies would have to remove and replace millions of miles of distribution pipes at an astronomical cost and disrupt service to millions of homes and businesses.

Pipeline Public Education Programs Questioned
Various members of Congress referenced the "BP" issue when complaining about PHMSA's dependence on an American Petroleum Institute (API) standard related to pipeline communications with the public.

The public education standard required by the Pipeline Safety Improvement Act of 2002 came up during the latest hearings on pipeline safety by the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee in July. That standard was implemented by the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA) in a final rule in 2005 referencing RP 1162 which instructs transmission and distribution pipelines on what to include in messages to the public about potential, accidental releases, requisite public safety steps, use of one-call phone numbers prior to excavation and other things. Recently, the National Transportation Safety Board cited the failure of pipeline programs based on the standard in the investigation report of a deadly pipeline explosion in Mississippi that killed a girl and her grandmother.

At the hearings in July, Rep. Mark Schauer (D-MI) and others raised the even broader issue of whether PHMSA ought to be depending on API pipeline standards at all, given that they are developed by task forces composed almost exclusively of industry members. Rep. Jerome Nadler (D-NY) was incensed that the public must pay $89 to get a printed copy of RP 1189. It is available for viewing, free of charge, on the API website.

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