North American Oil & Gas Pipelines

OCT 2018

North American Oil & Gas Pipelines covers the news shaping the business of oil and gas pipeline construction and maintenance in North America, including pipeline installation methods, integrity management innovations and managerial strategies.

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18 North American Oil & Gas Pipelines | OCTOBER 2 018 By Bradley Kramer M any challenges face the oil and gas pipeline industry. Chief among them are regulatory constraints and third-party opposition. However, an increasingly united coali- tion of trade associations and individ- ual stakeholder companies are work- ing to shape permitting policies and public opinion to ensure pipelines are built, operated and maintained safely and efficiently. Domestic and global energy demand continues to grow, and North American oil and gas production has grown along- side. The problem is transporting the product to the end-user. More pipelines are needed to ease supply bottlenecks and ensure energy demands are met. Despite high-profile incidents, such as the tragic explosions in Massachusetts on Sept. 13, pipelines remain the safest means of transportation for oil and gas compared to alternative means, such as truck or rail, according to the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Admin- istration (PHMSA), which operates under the U.S. Department of Transportation. Pipelines are also more efficient. A network of more than 2.6 million miles of pipelines in the United States deliver trillions of cubic feet of natural gas and more than 19 million barrels per day of liquid petroleum products each year, according to U.S. government data. By contrast, it would take a constant line of tanker trucks, about 750 per day, loading up and moving out every two minutes, 24 hours a day, seven days a week, to move the same volume as a single pipe- line. The railroad equivalent would be a train of 75 tank cars, each with a capacity of 2,000 barrels, delivered daily. With the U.S. energy industry boom- ing, pipeline infrastructure must expand to bring the production to the manufac- turing facilities and ultimately to the end consumers, says Tim Aydt, president of Findlay, Ohio-based Marathon Pipe Line LLC (MPL), a subsidiary of MPLX LP, which is a diversified, growth-oriented master limited partnership formed by Marathon Petroleum Corp. (MPC) to own, operate, develop and acquire mid- stream energy infrastructure assets. "But pipelines enable more than oil and gas production," Aydt adds, "they enable a larger industry that supports millions of jobs, creates life-saving products, provides affordable basic utilities and helps bring people out of energy poverty." Aydt points to the large number of products that oil and gas make possible, including plastics, pharmaceuticals, cel- lular phones, clothing fibers, building materials and more, which "we all de- mand and depend on daily to make mod- ern life possible." To aid the safe and efficient develop- ment of pipelines, energy industry stake- holders are ramping up advocacy efforts to expand support for these development efforts. Individual companies like MPL and industry associations such as the American Petroleum Institute (API), the American Pipeline Contractors Associa- tion (APCA), the Distribution Contrac- tors Association (DCA), the Interstate Natural Gas Association of American (INGAA), the Pipe Line Contractors As- sociation (PLCA) and many others are working together to get the message out through a combination of federal and state government advocacy efforts, letter writing campaigns, social media, com- C o v e r S t o r y Vo A United Pipeline Advocacy Pushes Back Against Misinformation

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