The Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA) is sponsoring a public meeting on Enhancing Integrity Management of Gas Distribution Pipelines. The meeting will be held on Wednesday, Sept. 21, 2005, from 8 a.m. to 4:15 p.m. at the Westin Park Central Hotel, 12720 Merit Drive, Dallas, TX 75251 (1-972-851-2037 or 1-800-Westin1). At the meeting, PHMSA will discuss actions that have been underway this year to review the need for integrity management requirements for gas distribution pipelines. The meeting also will provide discussion on the use of Excess Flow Valves in gas distribution safety lines as a technique for mitigating the consequences of service line incidents, and will provide the public an opportunity to give comments.
The preliminary agenda for this meeting includes briefings on the following topics:
- The need for improvement
- Distinctions among gas distribution pipeline systems
- Comments from the team of executives (industry, state regulators, and public) providing oversight of the Phase 1 program
- The plan and process of the Phase 1 program; (including use of EFV as a technique for mitigating the consequences of service line incidents
- Major issues and approaches, including preliminary Phase 1 conclusions
- Issues and cautions that must be considered in developing distribution integrity management requirements
- The views of industry and other stakeholders
The analyses and evaluations conducted by the work/study groups comprise Phase 1 of the PHMSA plan to develop integrity management requirements. Phase 1 is expected to be completed by the end of 2005. The Phase 1 results will support PHMSA and state regulators in making decisions regarding the nature of requirements that may be needed. Achieving increased integrity of distribution pipeline systems may involve Federal and/or State rulemaking, development of guidance for adoption by States, publication and promotion of best practices or national consensus standards, or some combination of these or other actions. PHMSA will use the results of Phase 1 to develop new requirements as part of Phase 2 of the PHMSA plan, which PHMSA expects to begin in early 2006.
Interested parties may find additional information regarding the previous public meeting in the docket (http://dms.dot.gov), then click Simple Search and type in Docket No. 19854. Visitors may access the Distribution Integrity Management Web site through the OPS home page (http://ops.dot.gov) by selecting Integrity Management and then Distribution Integrity Management.