Pipelines, Compressors, Storage, Metering Stations — Siteing, Regulation, Public Input, Safety
Note: I have used this. It is clunky and clumsy but the only thing I have encountered that let me find with some precision some lines that run within 4 mi west of me between the Tenessee line and the Millenium line. This is of considerable importance because those Rights of Way will very likely become major conduits and regions where compressors will pop up. One of the lines I was able to trace as far north as Cortland before I lost interest and tracing was getting hard. There is a glitch when trying to trace over a state line, but there is a workaround by just tracing up to the border and then doing another run starting on the other side of the border. Stan Scobie, Binghamton, NY, 607-669-4683
Pipeline Safety: Updates to Pipeline and Liquefied Natural Gas Reporting Requirements: A Rule by the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration on 11/26/2010 .
- Document Citation:75 FR 72878 CFR: 49 CFR 191
This final rule revises the Pipeline Safety Regulations to improve the reliability and utility of data collections from operators of natural gas pipelines, hazardous liquid pipelines, and liquefied natural gas (LNG) facilities. These revisions will enhance PHMSA’s ability to understand, measure, and assess the performance of individual operators and industry as a whole; integrate pipeline safety data to allow a more thorough, rigorous, and comprehensive understanding and assessment of risk; and expand and simplify existing electronic reporting by operators. These revisions will improve both the data and the analyses PHMSA and others rely on to make critical, safety-related decisions, and will facilitate both PHMSA’s and states’ allocation of pipeline safety program inspection and other resources based on a more accurate accounting of risk.Show citation box
Citizens Guide An Interstate Gas Facility on My Land What do I need to know? FERC
Winsor Landowners Rejecting Plan for Gas Pipeline Press-Connects
Know Your Rights When An Interstate Pipeline Comes to Your Community Provides information on participating in the FERC process, a discussion of preemption and federal eminent domain, flow charts showing the stages of the FERC process and sample forms for intervention.
Texas may require utilities to replace steel gas lines to prevent explosions – and you may pay. Tuesday, July 6, 2010 By ELIZABETH SOUDER / The Dallas Morning News email@example.com
Transmission Pipelines and Land Use: (National Academies Press)
A Risk-Informed Approach — Special Report 281
Firming Renewable Electric Power Generators: Operators and Challenges for Natural Gas Pipelines. The INGAA Foundation, Inc. Mar. 2011. This summarizes a major report on what sorts of pipelines may be necessary for nat gas to serve as a “firming/backup to intermittenet wind/solar renewables. It is 220 pages and seems to have a lot of good stuff in it.
The issues are interesting in that “excess capacity (15%) pipelines may be necessary in order to allow veryfast ramp up of the backing/firming nat gas generation.
This raises to issue of the cost of such excess capacity and who pays for it – think subsidies.
Storage and Transport Infrastructure
Finger Lakes Gas Storage and Infrastructure Project. Salt Caverns, Watkins Glen, NY Even if no fracking occurs in NY, Inergy intends to turn our region into the gas storage and transportation hub of the Northeastern United states- the salt caverns are empty and waiting, the railways are in place, and we’re not paying enough attention to this!
Inergy: Making Marcellus Happen (Watch the video)
Inergy, LP (Finger Lakes LPG Storage, LLC) based in Kansas City is a pipeline and natural gas storage company with approximately 3,000 employees and annual sales of about $1.8 billion.
In 2008, Inergy purchased the U.S. Salt plant on the west side of Seneca Lake approximately 2 miles north of Watkins Glen to “build an integrated gas storage and transportation hub in the Northeast.”
Details of the Inergy proposal include:
- Construct and operate a new underground LPG storage facility for the storage and distribution of propane and butane on a portion of a 576 acre site near the intersection of Rts. 14 and 14A in the Town of Reading.
- Proposed storage capacity of 2.10 million barrels (88.20 million gallons)
- Construction of a 14 acre brine pond located on a steep slope just above Seneca Lake with a capacity of 91.8 million gallons.
- Construction of a new rail and truck LPG transfer facility consisting of: A 6 track rail siding capable of allowing loading/unloading of 24 rail cars every 12 hours 24/7/365. A truck loading station capable of loading 4 trucks per hour (with the possibility to expand) 24/7/365.
- Construction also to include surface works consisting of truck and rail loading terminals, LPG storage tanks, offices and other distribution facilities and stormwater control structures.
Please refer to the “Resources” page for more detailed information on the project and its potentially devastating environmental consequences.
To stay informed please join the Gas Free Seneca Listserv.
- Inergy CEO Statement on Making Marcellus Happen:
Even if no fracking occurs in NY, Inergy intends to turn our region into the gas storage and transportation hub of the Northeastern United states- the salt caverns are empty and waiting, the railways are in place, and we’re not paying enough attention to this!
- “CENTRAL NEW YORK OIL AND GAS COMPANY, LLC ANNOUNCES A NON-BINDING OPEN SEASON FOR NORTH-SOUTH PROJECT”– http://www.stagecoachstorage.com/ExternalFiles/SitesIP/stagecoach/Docs/NORTH-SOUTH%20Open%20Season%20Package.pdf
- “The Marcellus Shale Play: A Reporter’s Peaceful Retreat Becomes A Natural Gas Industry Target: “…Inergy, a Kansas City-based fuel storage and gas pipeline company, bought the plant two years ago in order to convert its salt caverns into a …repository for millions of barrels of liquid propane and butane. The company is putting infrastructure in place to serve the boom in drilling for natural gas in the Marcellus Shale, a rich deposit running from upstate New York through Pennsylvania, Ohio and West Virginia…” ” (DC Bureau)- http://dcbureau.org/201010181243/Bulldog-Blog/the-marcellus-shale-play-a-reporters-peaceful-retreat-becomes-a-natural-gas-industry-target.html
- “Finger Lakes, LLC LPG Underground Storage Facility”– http://www.dec.ny.gov/permits/71619.html
- “DEC Facility No. 8-4432-00085”– http://www.dec.ny.gov/docs/permits_ej_operations_pdf/finalscope.pdf
- “Notice of Complete Application”– http://www.dec.ny.gov/enb/20100623_not8.html
- “Lead Agency Dispute: Town of Reading Planning Board and the NYS DEC, through its Region 8 office”– http://www.dec.ny.gov/permits/65814.html
- “Wells for Disposal of Brine Withdrawn During Cavern Leaching for Gas Storage”– http://www.dec.ny.gov/energy/29856.html
- “Company proposes $40M gas project”– http://www.fingerlakesmedia.com/news.php?viewStory=1966
- “Comment on Proposed Storage of LPG in Salt Caverns near Seneca Lake in Schuyler County” (Committee to Preserve the Finger Lakes- http://www.preservethefingerlakes.com/2011.01.01_arch.html#1295703642244
- Is a Gas Company a Utility? One of the things the Tioga County Landowners group has discussed in public meetings is the importance of making sure landowners have good pipeline leases – even if they don’t have drilling. The idea, I believe, is that by offering a way to get gas from well to major transmission line, the gas companies won’t be tempted to gain status as a utility which would allow them powers of eminent domain for the gathering lines. Well, here’s how Chief Oil & Gas got around that little hurdle in Susquehanna County, PA – they got permission to use state highway ROW. Not a good precedent for those who would like to lease pipeline routes, and for those who want to have no pipelines across their property.
- Report of Laser Hearings in Windsor 10-20-10
I was one of about 65 people in the auditorium of Windsor High School as officials of the Public Service Commission and Laser Northeast Gathering Company first gave their information presentations and then answered questions and listened to statements from the public.
A 5 member Commission body, under Administrative Law Judge Howard Jack, will, at some point in the future, make a determination to either deny, grant with conditions, or approve the application to construct a 16 inch pipeline capable of carrying up to 170 million cu ft of gas per day. (Asked if the pipeline was being planned to serve more than the 18 wells stated in the application, Laser reps answered with the flow volume, and admitted that it could serve hundreds of wells. At the same time they said that the wells in PA that are now producing are not producing gas at a high rate.) Because the application is for a line that is less than 10 miles in length the PSC is not required under Article VII <www.dps.state.ny.us/articlevii.htm> to give the application its “full review”. Article VII was created in 1970 and actions under this law are not subject to SEQR (created at a later date). Neither does an Art VII certificate grant eminent domain or property rights.
We were told that Laser has been working for a year with not only the Town of Windsor but with the 1700 member Windsor Landowner Pipeline Coalition to put the pieces in place for this project. Windsor has enacted road protection and noise ordinances <http://tinyurl.com/2fc3hau>. The landowners have negotiated contracts. Laser owns the 40 acre parcel for the compressor station.
The audience asked questions about compressor station maintenance and noise, about emergency planning, odorizing the gas in the lines, depth under roads and rivers, and environmental protections during the construction phase.
I asked several questions about maintenance and gas leak monitoring. The Laser reps told me that the station will be monitored closely and that they have the capacity to “count gas molecules entering and leaving the station”. They did Not say that the incoming and outgoing volume is balanced but said instead that it is “reconciled”. And no, they have never considered using infra-red technology to look for leaks. And No, the gas “is not required to be” odorized.
There are 80 residences on the perimeter of the 40 acre parcel that will hold the compressor station. Several people asked questions about noise. The PSC standard is 40 decibels at any residence. The Windsor ordinance states: maximum noise levels “During daytime hours: ambient noise levels plus five (5) dBA. During nighttime hours: ambient noise levels plus three (3) dBA. Additionally, until demonstrated by the applicant or by the Town, ambient noise or sound levels within the Town of Windsor shall be assumed to be 35 dBA.
Using the “Teacher’s Resource Guide” <http://tinyurl.com/c9zxdx > I find that they rate 40 decibels the noise level in a library.
I asked if compliance with the Windsor ordinance is required under the Art. VII certificate and was told that “it could be”.
During the public comment part of the evening, there were 7 presentations. Of those 7, 5 people lauded the Laser company for the wonderful job they have done in bringing this opportunity to the people of Windsor. Two people (one of them Deborah Goldberg) spoke for full review, no pipelines before SGEIS approval, cumulative impact study, and for tighter environmental protections.
If you have gotten this far in reading you understand that the landowner coalitions did a good job of getting their members out to this hearing. The company reps did their usual job of talking slick. The PSC administrators need to hear from lots more people who want a full review (this pipeline will be much more than 10 miles in length when they get any of the laterals in place). Visit http://tinyurl.com/2bbbzby , and scroll down to the comment section.
Pipelines are coming to your neighborhood folks! Do you want to live next to a compressor station with its attendant noise and air pollution? We need to make a larger stink than they plan to make or these things will be rubber stamped into place. Remember, they need pipelines to put the gas into before they drill. If the pipelines are here the drillers will come.
Request full review. Request infra-red monitoring and odorizing of the gas. Request environmental protections and full cumulative study.
Dryden Resource Awareness Coalition. Wednesday, July 7, 2010
- Pa. to Corning gas line gets OK: “…Corning, N.Y. — A proposed $43 million gas pipeline from the Pennsylvania border up to Corning has received approval from the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, clearing the way for construction next summer. Empire Pipeline’s new 15-mile-long, 24-inch pipeline will carry Marcellus Shale gas produced in Pennsylvania north to Corning, where it will connect with the Millennium Pipeline…The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, based in Washington, D.C., determined the project would not have a significant environmental impact. The agency’s assessment was detailed in a 119-page report sent to The Leader last week. The report is posted online at http://www.ferc.gov . Several other local, state and federal agencies were involved in the review…FERC’s approval gives Empire Pipeline the right to use eminent domain, although company officials say that’s a last resort. They have already been negotiating compensation deals with landowners. About 50 area residents attended a presentation and public hearing in Corning back in late April, but no one voiced opposition…” ” (Corning Leader) (NY & PA)- http://www.the-leader.com/topstories/x1145377423/Pa-to-Corning-gas-line-gets-OK
- New York’s old gas lines could explode like pipe near San Francisco By CHUCK BENNETT. September 20, 2010
Fuel For Debate By Tom Grace Cooperstown News Bureau The Daily Star Sat Sep 25, 2010, Are gas pipelines dangerous?
- API & Gov’t Cited Safety Regulations Online Free, but you need to register to view the “read only” files.
- API authored all or part of 27 standards on pipeline safety that were then adopted by a key agency that oversees pipelines, the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration. Many of the standards were not easily accessible to the public, as copies were kept at the PHMSA and API offices but were not released online. There have been similar reports of the now-defunct Minerals Management Service adopting the industry’s offshore drilling standards.API makes quite a bit of money selling these standards, which is why the group originally didn’t put them online. Now, the public can see a
read-only version of the standard. Hard copies will still have to be purchased. The 160 standards that have been put online are just one-third of the standards authored by API, but the group says all of the safety-related standards have been put online.
- Oil and Gas Industry Writes Its Own Pipeline Standards. Pipeline Regulator PHMSA Adopts All or Parts of At Least 29 Standards Written by Oil and Gas Industry. By Andrew Restuccia 8/13/10 12:25 PM
- Energy officials: Time needed to report incidents. Updated: Sep 24, 2010 12:06 AM Friday. By JOAN LOWY. Associated Press Writer
Gas Blasts Spur Questions on Oversight. By ANDREW W. LEHREN. New York Times. September 24, 2010. Experts say that weak oversight of the 2.7 million miles of gas pipeline in the United States has contributed to hundreds of episodes that have killed 60 people in the last five years. Gas Blasts Spur Questions on Oversight
- Unregulated Produced Fluid Pipeline Leaks. https://gdacc.files.wordpress.com/2010/11/uninspected-antero-pipelines-already-leaking.doc (The proper context for this issue is that there are no regs/permits etc for this sort of pipeline – whatsoever. The BIG central impoundments that the dSGEIS talked about serving multiple large pads, impoundments for flowback, etc, will be very big ponds, connected to multiple well sites by these sorts of “temporary pipes. Stan Scobie, Binghamton, NY)
How to keep energy pipelines safe. By Donald F. Santa. Albany Times-Union. December 5, 2010.
Map Gas Lines to Ensure Safety. Stan Scobie. Albany Times Union. Dec. 19, 2010.
NPR 15 mins on pipeline accidents and poor inspection oversight. http://nogaspipeline.org/2010-12-17/pbs-exposes-egregious-lapses-in-pipeline-safety-no-gas-pipeline-in-jersey-city. 2-17-2010
PBS Need to Know Dec. 17, 2010 http://www.pbs.org/wnet/need-to-know/video/video-invisible-lines-the-dangers-of-natural-gas-pipelines/5874/
Office of Pipeline Safety (OPS) within the U. S. Department of Transportation, Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA). PHMSA is the primary federal regulatory agency responsible for ensuring the safety of America’s energy pipelines. We develop and implement pipeline safety regulations at the federal level, and we share regulatory responsibility with the states, to provide oversight to more than two million miles of pipelines. http://primis.phmsa.dot.gov/comm/Index.htm?nocache=6419