Tag Archives: features

Rich Hoffmann Leaves INGAA Foundation Bigger and Better

August 2017, Vol. 244, No. 8

Rich Hoffmann, the popular executive director for the INGAA Foundation, is retiring on Aug. 31 after 10 years of service. In this interview, he looks back on his tenure, and suggests what his successor, Jason Goldstein, can expect. P&GJ: Looking back, Rich, what was your goal when you came to the Foundation, what were some of the anxieties you felt, and what do you consider your biggest accomplishments? Hoffmann: My first goal in 2008 was to continue the great reputation of the INGAA Foundation. There was a new strategic plan approved in 2007 that I […]

Midyear International Report: Pipeline Construction & Market Trends

August 2017, Vol. 244, No. 8

The global oil and gas industry closed 2016 with cautious optimism that the worst of a prolonged downturn might be over. Midway through this year, there is growing confidence that 2017 marks a turning point in several key areas that drive long-term demand for natural gas development and pipeline construction. While the industry still faces a challenging year, analysts believe the oil and gas industry is on a firmer footing in 2017 than at any time in the previous two years. Turning Point Wood Mackenzie projected earlier this year that exploration should return to profitability […]

Dakota Access Pipeline: Industry Retrospective on Lessons Learned

August 2017, Vol. 244, No. 8

It is more than a little ironic that no one wants to discuss the most talked about U.S. pipeline project in the past two years despite the fact that it is now successfully built and operating. The $3.78 billion, nearly 1,200-mile Dakota Access Pipeline (DAPL) sparked both controversy and pride in 2016, depending on the respective opposing positions on the mammoth venture, but in mid-2017 industry observers were circumspect about articulating what was learned from the unquestionably large engineering and political accomplishment that DAPL represents. The consensus is that it will be much more difficult, […]

Trans-Adriatic Gas Pipeline Expected to Fill Big Void

August 2017, Vol. 244, No. 8

Construction recently passed the one-year mark on the $45 billion mega-project, Trans Adriatic Pipeline (TAP), designed to fill the gap in Europe’s Southern Gas Corridor project to access gas from fields in Central Asia. The pipeline is one of Europe’s largest and most strategic natural gas infrastructure projects.  It will  connect customers in Italy and the Balkans with the Azeri gas fields of the Caspian Sea. When completed, TAP will transport natural gas from the giant Shah Deniz II field in Azerbaijan to Europe through a 544-mile (878-km) pipeline, connecting with the Trans Anatolian Pipeline (TANAP)...

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Sample Probe Insertion Depth In Gas Pipelines With Liquid Contaminants

July 2017, Vol. 244, No. 7

Liquid contaminants in natural gas pipelines have recently become an increasing concern.  Typical liquid contaminants can include water and hydrocarbons condensed from the gas stream, glycol carryover from inefficient equipment or process upsets, methanol injected to avoid hydrate formation, and compressor oils. These contaminants are usually separated and filtered from the gas stream before delivery to a pipeline.  However, separators and filters are never 100% efficient, so there will always be traces of contaminants that can enter the pipeline, and ambient temperatures below the dew point of the gas stream can cause condensation in the […]

Permian Basin: How Long Can It Grow in Low-Price, Oversupplied Market

July 2017, Vol. 244, No. 7

Coming out of the first quarter in 2017, the venerable Permian Basin had no fewer than three major natural gas takeaway pipeline projects on the drawing board along with several liquid pipe projects as well, exuding an industry-leading appeal among the U.S. major oil and gas production basins. The prospective projects all promised to ease a looming production glut in the Permian producing region, linking to existing pipelines, including those that export gas to Mexico and to a Cheniere Energy Inc. liquefied natural gas (LNG) export facility under construction. Amidst the buildout, Dallas-based EnLink Midstream […]

Kimberly Watson Leads SGA through Era of Industry Change

July 2017, Vol. 244, No. 7

It would be hard to find a pipeline industry executive as fluent in change as Kimberly Watson.  As a young Texas A&M University accounting graduate, the Houston native started her job search at the epicenter of an oil bust and a savings and loan crisis that plunged the Texas economy into a major recession.  The university’s placement office helped Watson land a job at Houston Natural Gas, giving her a front-row seat to the most intensive period of consolidation the industry had ever seen. Within a few years, the intrastate operator transformed into an interstate […]

Challenge of Operational Cybersecurity, Threats to Pipelines

June 2017, Vol. 244, No. 6

It was December 2011. Unbeknownst to anyone, seemingly innocuous emails began showing up in the accounts of U.S. oil and gas pipeline controls engineers and technicians. These were not just general spam emails. They targeted specific individuals across the country. Long before cybersecurity, malware, and ransomware had become buzz words, these little emails carried a hidden little software package called a Trojan. Just like the soldiers hidden in the Trojan horse of Greek legend, they were poised to attack as soon as they were turned loose. In this case, by the simple click of a […]

Native Americans and Energy Projects – High Stakes in the Ground

June 2017, Vol. 244, No. 6

While the average oil or natural gas industry worker today has little direct knowledge of the politically turbulent American period in the late 1960s and early ’70s, reminders of that period of social unrest have returned with a focus on pipelines and the environment. In the process of rekindling the feel of a “national movement” aimed at fossil fuels rather than an unpopular war, U.S. Native American tribes have been in the forefront of civil disobedience, which has caught some energy companies off guard. This trend appears to be reversing decades of collaboration and cooperation […]

Consumers Energy’s Big Job Moves Forward in Michigan

June 2017, Vol. 244, No. 6

Consumers Energy, with nearly 1.8 million customers, is among the largest of the gas distribution companies in the United States (ranking 12th in the in the annual P&GJ 500 Report)  – and indicative of its size, it also faces one of the largest jobs when it comes to upgrading infrastructure. In all, the company plans to replace 2,600 miles of pipe over a 25-year period, at a cost of about $75 million per year. Fortunately, under the company’s Enhanced Infrastructure Replacement Program (EIRP), Consumers Energy started right out of the gate, replacing 350 miles of […]

2017 Shaping Up as a Time to Build Pipelines

May 2017, Vol. 244, No. 5

About the same time in early February that one part of the U.S. federal government was freeing up a stalled multibillion-dollar interstate oil pipeline in the Midwest for Texas-based Energy Transfer Partners (ETP), another part of the Trump administration gave the greenlight to ETP’s Rover Pipeline for moving Appalachian natural gas supplies to market in the Northeast. The symbolism and momentum felt huge, even in a continuing depressed commodity price environment. As a result of the latter approval by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC), ETP executives told news media bullishly that they expected the […]

The Gained Decade: North American Gas Distribution

May 2017, Vol. 244, No. 5

What a difference a decade makes. In 2007, the Canadian and U.S. housing markets were booming, distribution utilities were focused on new construction, hydraulic fracking was hardly in our vocabulary, natural gas was $7 and oil was $55. The possibilities of financial collapse, economic turmoil and high unemployment seemed remote. Yet the cracks were visible. In the period 2008-10, the global slowdown punished everyone … except gas distribution utilities. Today, we have anemic economic growth, slowly recovering housing markets, hydraulic fracking is the norm, distribution utilities are asset-replacement- focused, natural gas is $3 and oil, […]

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