DOT Pipeline Compliance News

February 2023 Issue

In This Issue

TRRC Notice to Oil & Gas and Pipeline Operators: Updates to Form CI-D and Form CI-X Online Filing System

Effective January 31, 2023, the Railroad Commission of Texas (TRRC) will launch updates to the online system used to file the Form CI-D, Acknowledgement of Critical Customer/Critical Gas Supplier Designation, and Form CI-X, Critical Designation Exception Application.

The updates to the online filing system provide a more efficient process when submitting the required forms.

  • Users are no longer required to enter data on a workbook spreadsheet and upload as a .CSV file to the TRRC Online System.
  • There are two new left-hand menu options “File CID” and “File CIX.” When selecting either of these options, the TRRC Online System will display three tabs – “Acknowledge,” “Select,” and “Submit.” These tabs allow users to enter information and complete online filing of either form.
  • The organization’s facilities now auto -populate on the “Select” tab with the option to select which facilities when filing either form. Upload of a .CSV file is no longer required, but the online system still allows users to attach supporting documentation.

Reminder: oil and gas operators and pipeline operators must file the Form CI-D or Form CI-D online by March 1, 2023, using the TRRC Online System.  Hard copy forms or email form submissions are not accepted.  To view the full notice, visit the TRRC website.

Louisiana Department of Natural Resources Proposed Amendments

Office of Conservation – Pipeline Division Title 43

The Louisiana Department of Natural Resources Office of Conservation is proposing to amend LAC 43: XIII. The proposed changes will reorganize the affected sections, combine the carbon dioxide rules in Title 43 with those in Title 33, and amend the regulations in Title 43. Additionally, the damage prevention rules, and pipeline operations rules, are proposed to be amended. This Notice of Intent has not been published in the Louisiana Federal Register; however, it is expected in February. While there are minor reorganization and smaller changes being suggested, the more technical proposed changes include adding regulations for transporting carbon dioxide in a gaseous or non-supercritical state, reporting carbon dioxide incidents, and additional updates to carbon dioxide pipeline regulations.

For a copy of the proposed changes (once they are published), contact Jessica Foley.

Q&A Section

Do you have questions? RCP’s SMEs have the answers. Information will be posted here for questions we often get from clients, or discussions we have with regulators, regarding interpretations and pending regulatory deadlines.

Q: We have a gas pipeline adjacent to a refining / chemical facility.  How should I count the buildings in the facility when doing class location analysis? 

A: Counting the buildings at an industrial facility is unlikely to exceed the nine buildings causing a Class change from Class 1 to 2. However, segments of pipelines which are within 100 yards of a building(s) where people gather in numbers exceeding 20 or more for 5 days per week during any 10 weeks of the year does make the affected segment a Class 3 per § 192.5(3)(ii).

Upcoming Deadlines:

  • The onshore gas gathering rule was published April 8, 2022. Portions became effective May 16, 2022 – Reporting of Incidents for the new Type C & R.
  • Full identification by Type and Class location was to be completed by November 16, 2022
  • For the newly identified Type C that must have the MAOP established, the deadline for boosting system pressure to take advantage of “highest actual operating pressure” as permitted by 192.619(a)(3) is coming fast – May 16, 2023
  • And as a reminder, the “Stay of Enforcement” does not mean regulators don’t expect work toward getting compliance activities in place can be ignored.

If we can help, contact Jessica Foley.

The Enforcement Corner

The Enforcement Corner summarizes recent PHMSA enforcement actions, indicating where PHMSA is putting its enforcement efforts and the fines they are proposing for various types of violations.

In December 2022, PHMSA issued 1 WL, 4 NOAs, 1 CAO, 1 NOPSO, and 8 NOPVs accompanied by $492,200 in proposed fines. Significant proposed fines were attributed to the following code sections:

  • $36,200 – 49 CFR 195.56(a) – Safety-related Condition Reports
  • $22,400 – 49 CFR 40.25(a) – Drug Testing
  • $22,400 – 49 CFR 199.105(c)(6) – Drug Testing
  • $71,500 – 49 CFR 192.467(c) – External Corrosion Control
  • $50,100 – 49 CFR 192.5(b)(1)(ii) – Class Locations
  • $40,000 – 49 CFR 192.609 – Class Location Study
  • $55,900 – 49 CFR 192.905(b)(1) – High Consequence Area Identification
  • $193,700 – 49 CFR 192.605(a) – Procedure Manuals                                   

Please note:

  1. Pipeline operators may disagree in whole or in part with each proposed violation cited by PHMSA. 
  2. Proposed Civil Penalties (PCP) may be reduced or eliminated before an enforcement action becomes final.
  3. A Corrective Action Order (CAO) usually addresses urgent situations arising out of an accident, spill, or other significant, immediate, or imminent safety or environmental concern.
  4. A Notice of Amendment (NOA) is frequently a result of a difference of opinion regarding written procedure requirements.
  5. A Notice of Proposed Safety Order (NOPSO) addresses pipeline integrity risks that may not constitute a hazardous facility requiring immediate corrective action (see Corrective Action Order described above),but do need to be addressed over time.
  6. A Notice of Probable Violation (NOPV) is not proof that a violation actually occurred.
  7. A Proposed Compliance Order (PCO) frequently documents actions the pipeline operator already planned to do.
  8. Warning Letter (WL) is an official notice by PHMSA that an operator needs to make improvements but that no further enforcement is proposed for those findings at this time.

RCP maintains a detailed database of all PHMSA enforcement actions dating back to 2007 and is routinely asked for data analysis of various enforcement actions. For more information on how RCP can assist with enforcement action data analysis services, contact Jessica Foley.

Need to respond to a PHMSA enforcement action?
Need to know if your enforcement action is an outlier, or par for the course? 

RCP maintains a detailed database of all PHMSA enforcement actions and their resolution which enables us to compare and contrast individual enforcement actions to nationwide actions and trends.  We can help put things into context to ensure an effective reply for each citation.  For more information on how RCP can assist with enforcement action data analysis services, contact Jessica Foley.

Did you know?

The Solution is Here.  America has the energy resources, innovation, and skilled workforce to meet energy needs while continuing to reduce emissions. But we need the policies to make it happen.  API has a plan to protect America from energy challenges together.  It’s a plan in three parts – to Make, Move, and Improve American energy.

Make: America needs a five-year offshore leasing program and new onshore leases as well as fewer barriers for producing fuels. Ending restrictions could add 77k barrels of oil equivalent/day through 2035, according to a Rystad study. 

Move: Current permitting policies are stalling vital infrastructure, with $157 billion in energy investment in the US economy awaiting approval. A two-year NEPA review limit could unleash needed infrastructure.

Improve: Reducing regulatory barriers will enable companies to accelerate carbon capture, utilization and storage (CCUS), hydrogen and cleaner transportation fuels.
America has the energy resources, innovation, and skilled workforce to meet energy needs while continuing to reduce emissions. But we need the policies to make it happen.

Just Released from AGA! 2023 Playbook: We are the Future of the Natural Gas Industry

2023 Conference News

In-person conferences are back in full swing! Visit us at our booth at both API & AGA where we will have plenty of swag and an opportunity to win a bottle of RCP’s 25th Anniversary Single Barrel Jack Daniel’s.

API 2023 Pipeline Conference and Expo
May 1-3, 2023 | JW Marriott Nashville, TN

Registration is now open. Program details and the schedule at a glance is posted on API’s event page.

2023 AGA Operations Conference and Biennial Exhibition
May 2-4, 2023 | Gaylord Texas Resort & Convention Center | Grapevine, TX

The annual AGA Operations Conference is the natural gas industry’s premier gathering of natural gas utility and transmission company operations for the sharing of technical knowledge, ideas and practices to promote the safe, reliable, and cost-effective delivery of natural gas to the end-user. The Operations Conference is AGA’s largest forum including 100 speakers and over 120 technical presentations that run the gamut of topics, such as gas measurement, operations advocacy, safety, environment, storage, engineering, construction and maintenance, gas control, supplemental gas, corrosion control and piping materials. The 2023 exhibition will be held in conjunction with the conference. The exhibition attracts approximately 250 domestic/international vendors.

We would welcome the opportunity to discuss our services with you.


Bill Byrd signature
W. R. (Bill) Byrd, PE
RCP Inc.