In This Issue

PRCI Established Emerging Fuels Institute

Through the recently established Emerging Fuels Institute (EFI), Pipeline Research Council International (PRCI) is working to resolve the technical gaps that exist as the industry transitions to low carbon energy solutions using the existing pipeline asset infrastructure. As many governments are planning or have begun mandating transitions to renewable energy sources to achieve their stated goals of stabilizing the climate, low carbon footprint fuels are a foundational component for a sustainable energy society. 

The scope of the EFI addresses ammonia, biofuels, carbon capture and sequestration (CCS), hydrogen, and renewable natural gas (RNG). The EFI’s current priorities are following market focus in the storage and transportation of hydrogen and RNG. Project emphasis areas include:  

  • Integrity of pipeline system steel and non-steel components 
  • Compressor stations and facilities 
  • Pressure control and over pressure safety devices 
  • Design requirements for electrical classification and fire safety  
  • Downhole reservoir and cavern storage  

An important output of the EFI will be to develop a guide to safely convert and operate pipeline systems to allow for the transport and storage of the next generation of fuels.  

Collaboration with industry stakeholders is critical to ensure the optimization of the overall transition effort. To ensure a comprehensive and continued awareness of ongoing work within the industry, a key task of the EFI is partnering with global research associations to share respective roadmaps so that work is efficiently and comprehensively incorporated into EFI deliverables. These peer research associations currently include the Australian Pipeline and Gas Association (APGA), the European Pipeline Research Group (EPRG), the European Gas Research Group (GERG), the Future Fuels Collaborative Research Center (FFCRC), and the Gas Technology Institute (GTI).  

As the opportunities around emerging fuels continues to advance, it is important that PRCI works closely with our government, industry, and standards, developing organizations to ensure that the leading research defines how the energy pipeline industry is making progress to transport and store the next generation of fuels. There are a number of efforts progressing globally and to be able to achieve the timelines that policy makers have set, it is imperative that we work closely together. The EFI coordinates its efforts with governmental agencies such as the Canada Energy Regulator (CER), the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE), and the U.S. Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA). Industry associations that the EFI coordinates with include the Association of Oil Pipe Lines (AOPL), the American Petroleum Institute (API), and the Interstate Natural Gas Association of America (INGAA). Similarly, the EFI coordinates with technical societies such as Canadian Standards Association (CSA) and the American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME). 

Cliff Johnson, president of PRCI, stated that “the current pipeline infrastructure will play a key role in the energy transition. PRCI and its members are working to ensure the safety and integrity of the pipeline system for today and tomorrow.” PRCI looks forward to continuing to work closely with their members to ensure the safety and resiliency of the global pipeline infrastructure to transport and store energy.  

For more information about the EFI and membership, please contact Jeff Whitworth at