PHMSA Awards $75.6 Million for Pipeline Safety Oversight, Enhancement Activities

(P&GJ) – The Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA) has awarded over $75.6 million in grants to fund projects and activities to improve the safety of pipelines.

The grants will support the jobs of state pipeline inspectors, important pipeline safety training and educational programs, and the advancement of pipeline safety technologies. Recipients include state pipeline safety programs, state One-Call and damage prevention centers, community and non-profit organizations, as well as six universities.

“These grants aim to provide states and communities with the resources they need to address the pipeline safety challenges today and to develop solutions to the challenges of tomorrow,” said PHMSA Deputy Administrator Tristan Brown. “With U.S. production and exports at record levels, pipelines are continuing to operate at high capacity, underscoring the critical need to continue our investments in advancing pipeline safety and supporting communities with the resources they need.”

In addition, PHMSA awarded $64.9 million to state pipeline safety programs to reimburse states for a portion of their operating costs for inspecting intrastate pipelines and underground natural gas storage facilities, as well as to enforce safety regulations within state boundaries. State pipeline safety programs employ approximately 435 full-time inspectors that help oversee over 90% of America’s regulated natural gas and hazardous liquid pipeline network.

As part of its Competitive Academic Agreement Program (CAAP), PHMSA awarded $4.8 million to five collegiate institutions in North Dakota, Rhode Island, Texas, Ohio, and Oklahoma. The CAAP grants will support research aimed at improving the safety of carbon dioxide, hydrogen and particularly older, higher risk pipelines by improving pipeline coatings and advancing our understanding of risks associated with geographic proximities to pipeline incidents.

Other grants issued today include $2.2 million in Technical Assistance Grants; $1.7 million in State Damage Prevention Program Grants; $1.1 million in One-Call Grants; and $1.03 million in Pipeline Emergency Response Grants.

Since 2001, excavation damage has accounted for over 12% (third leading cause) of all pipeline failures, resulting in 74 human fatalities, 300 injuries, and over $664 million in property damage nationwide.

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