Interagency Task Force on NatGas Storage Safety seeks Stakeholder Input

U.S. Department of Energy, June 8, 2016

In April the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) and  Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA) announced the formation of a new Interagency Task Force on Natural Gas Storage Safety following the Aliso Canyon, California natural gas leak.  The new task force was created to discover better storage safety of natural gas which already provides millions of American homes with heat and is anticipated to provide a third of the U.S. total electric power generation this year.  In response to Aliso Canyon's closing, the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) accepted proposed tariff revisions in an attempt to mitigate risks leading to power outages and continues to investigate.

The Task force is studying three areas of interest: (1) integrity of natural gas wells at storage facilities, (2) vulnerability to energy reliability due to future leaks, and (3) environmental effects from natural gas leaks.  To accomplish this, the following workshops have been scheduled to hear from stakeholders:

  • Technical Workshop on the Implications of Increasing Electric Sector Natural Gas Demand:  DOE's Office of Energy Policy and Systems Analysis is holding a workshop to discuss natural gas and electricity modeling and planning with stakeholders and the role that underground gas storage facilities play to ensure reliable electric power generation and heating. 
  • Workshop on Well Integrity for Natural Gas Storage in Depleted Reservoirs and Aquifers: DOE's Office of Fossil Energy is meeting in Denver on July 12-13 to discuss with operators, regulators, and technical experts about wellbore integrity in underground gas storage fields and ways to reduce future gas leaks above the surface.
  • Public Workshop on Underground Natural Gas Storage Safety Regulation: PHMSA will meet with stakeholders including federal and state agencies. industry and members of the public for a high level technical understanding of underground natural gas storage safety.  The 1-day workshop is free and will be streamed live.

All Task force findings will be summarized and made public later in the year as it becomes available.


Click here to read the full article from U.S. Department of Energy.

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