It is estimated there are more than 20-thousand miles of hazardous liquid and natural gas pipelines in Nebraska. The pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration proposed new safety rules that the American Petroleum Institute is taking issue with. The Institute’s Robin Rorick says the government’s approach is costly and doesn’t enhance safety.
Rorick says, “The agency often times wants the individual companies to provide a certain amount of information. If they don’t have it it is a very inflexible approach of asking the companies to dig up the lines to inspect them. What we are telling the agency is there is great technology out there that are already widely used and widely accepted that provide better information, more accurate information and we don’t have to use invasive technology on an individual’s property.”
The government agency estimates it will cost $597-million to put the measures into place. Rorick says The Institute’s estimates show the costs would be in the area of $33.4-billion.
Rorick says the federal government recently ended their comment period on the proposal and will hopefully consider them before making their final rule. That could happen as early as this fall.
Rorick says the good news is that demand for natural gas is expected to increase 40% over the next ten years but the supplies are predicted to go up 48% so there is no worry of a shortage. However the cost of these new safety regulations will have an impact on the bottom line and that will impact consumers.