7th Annual Pipeline Opportunities Conference Focuses On Pipeline Integrity

February 2011, Vol. 238 No. 2

Many of the energy industry’s leading experts on safety issues will participate in the 7th Annual Pipeline Opportunities Conference on April 19 at the Intercontinental Hotel in Houston.

“Infrastructure Integrity: How Reliable is the Pipeline System?” is sponsored by Pipeline & Gas Journal in cooperation with the Interstate Natural Gas Association of America (INGAA) and the INGAA Foundation.

Jeff Share, editor of P&GJ and organizer of the conference, said it became clear after three serious energy-related incidents last summer that safety was going to be the leading issue for the pipeline industry. Even more recent tragic events have borne that out, he said.

“The oil and gas industry, including pipelines, is under unprecedented scrutiny by regulators, lawmakers, the public and even the industry itself,” Share said. “Now every time there is an incident, it is linked to previous events and draws even more attention to the industry.

“In this age of instant communications, the industry understands full well that it cannot afford to just react to incidents, but must go out of its way in planning for the unexpected. This is the most important conference we’ve ever had and is of utmost importance to anyone involved in the business.”

Share said industry-related associations and government officials are eager to report what they and their members are doing to ensure greater safety. As a result, the entire morning session will focus on pipeline integrity issues, including the condition of existing infrastructure; new technology to ensure pipeline safety; making sure you’re building a good pipeline; public perceptions and what is looming from state, local and federal governments in terms of regulating pipelines; renewal of the Pipeline Safety Act; and challenges and implications of new pipeline development including shale gas.

The first panel focusing on “Today’s Challenges for Oil and Gas Pipelines” will include Daniel Martin, Chairman, INGAA Foundation and Sr. Vice President for Pipeline Safety at El Paso Corp.; Dr. Oliver Moghissi, chairman of NACE International; Peter Lidiak, Pipeline Director, American Petroleum Institute, and Cliff Johnson, President, Pipeline Research Council International.

The second session will focus on “Moving The Industry Forward” and include Steve Fischer, Director of Program Development, Pipeline & Hazardous Materials Safety Administration: Pipelines & Informed Planning Alliance; Lori Traweek, Sr. Vice President and Chief Operating Officer, American Gas Association; Richard Hoffmann, Executive Director, INGAA Foundation; and Carl Weimer, Executive Director, Pipeline Safety Trust.

The keynote speaker will be Bruce Henning, Vice President of ICF International, who will provide an outlook on North American natural gas development. In the afternoon, an extended session will discuss new and ongoing pipeline development – particularly in the red-hot shale plays -with executives of several major operating companies including Spectra Energy; ONEOK Gathering & Processing; Energy Transfer Products; Crosstex Energy and DCP Midstream.

Share said an update on the proposed Alaskan gasline project is also planned.

The past three conferences have sold out so early registration is strongly recommended. A limited number of sponsorships are still available. Please contact Jeff Share for conference information at jshare@oildom.com; and Karen Francis for registration or sponsorship information at kfrancis@oildom.com.

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