Safety is paramount, and it guides everything we do. Members of the Interstate Natural Gas Association of America (INGAA) have made great strides through our widely recognized safety initiative, the “Integrity Management—Continuous Improvement” (IMCI) program. IMCI provides a foundation for members to safely support the energy transition as we evolve to a net-zero greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions economy.
INGAA’s IMCI program is comprised of a series of initiatives to bolster our industry’s safety efforts and continue working toward our goal of zero pipeline incidents. These include:
• Regular Stakeholder Engagement: INGAA members remain committed to regular and thoughtful engagement around the topic of safety with government officials, the public, and customers, such as utilities, shippers and end users.
• Transportation and Storage of Renewable Natural Gas (RNG): This initiative draws upon members’ decades of experience with transporting RNG and the variety of work being undertaken to ensure safe transportation and storage of larger quantities of RNG. INGAA and its members will continue to stay at the forefront of research around the safe transportation and storage of RNG and collaborate with government officials, the public and customers.
• Transportation and Storage of Hydrogen: Hydrogen represents tremendous potential in decarbonizing the natural gas transmission network. INGAA and its members will continue to stay at the forefront of research around the safe transportation and storage of hydrogen and collaborate with government officials, the public and customers.
• Rupture Detection and Response: As part of the original IMCI effort, INGAA developed goals to shorten valve closure times. To expand on this effort, INGAA members commit to update valve response and automation plans and continually meet to discuss the latest automation technologies.
• Managing Emissions from Integrity and Maintenance Work: INGAA members recognize that even as we decarbonize the network, we must also prioritize controlling emissions from integrity and maintenance work. Our members will share best practices around emissions reduction strategies associated in these areas.
• Development of American National Standards Institute (ANSI) Standard for Managing Geohazards: Geohazards, such as landslides, can affect the integrity of the gas transmission network. INGAA and its members will support and provide direction for a standard developed under ANSI requirements to manage geohazards in order to improve safety.
• Integration of Electro-Magnetic Acoustic Transducer (EMAT) In-Line Inspection (ILI) into Standards: INGAA and its members will work to develop an industry technical guidance document for usage of EMAT ILI tools so that cracking, especially stress corrosion cracking, can be reduced.
• Regulatory Acceptance of Non-Traditional Pipe: INGAA and its members will work to compile data to inform the industry on nontraditional pipe.
2023 Update: INGAA releases Key Safety Initiative Work Products
IMCI 2.0 Work Products by Initiative:
Managing Emissions from Integrity and Maintenance Work – Managing Methane Emissions from Integrity Management Work on Natural Gas Transmission & Storage Assets
A white paper providing best practices for reducing methane emissions from pipeline integrity and maintenance work within the natural gas transmission and storage industry. This information encourages operating companies to consider how these best practices and technologies can help them better understand and reduce their operational emissions and achieve their environmental goals.
Development of an American National Standards Institute Standards for Managing Geohazards – Framework for Geohazard Management
A high-level framework document to be used as an accepted practice for managing the potential effects of geohazards. This report will also be used to assist API RP 1187: Pipeline Integrity Management of Landslide Hazards.
Integration of Electro-Magnetic Acoustic Transducer (EMAT) In-Line Inspection (ILI) into Standards – Technical Guidance: Integrity management for Stress Corrosion Cracking Using Electromagnetic Acoustic Transducer (EMAT) In-Line Inspection
A practical guide to provide process and knowledge transfer to augment ILI and crack management procedures with a focus on the use of EMAT ILI systems to assess the threat of stress corrosion cracking.
Regulatory Acceptance of Non-Traditional Pipe – Study to Evaluate the Regulatory Acceptance of Non-Traditional Pipe
A report focusing on the various conventional and innovative solutions required to address future transportation challenges associated with non-traditional pipe (NTP) technologies. The report evaluates various options the pipeline industry has associated with NTP materials, along with sensing and monitoring technologies essential for their success.
Transportation and Storage of Renewable Natural Gas – INGAA Key Initiative: Transportation and Storage of Renewable Natural Gas
A detailed guidance document for safely transporting various types of renewable natural gas demonstrating that RNG is suitable for the pipeline grid, given proper conditioning.
In addition to those work products, INGAA completed the remaining goals of the IMCI 2.0 effort through the following initiatives:
- Regulator Stakeholder Engagement – INGAA maintained its commitment to regular stakeholder engagement by meeting with various organizations involved in advancing safety within the pipeline industry, such as the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration, the National Association of Regulatory Utility Commissioners, the National Association of Pipeline Safety Representatives, the Pipeline Safety Trust, and the Environmental Defense Fund. INGAA also recently updated its website to improve information sharing.
- Transportation and Storage of Hydrogen – INGAA completed a compendium of research of all available hydrogen pipeline safety research so that its members could have the most up-to-date information to ensure future hydrogen blends are safely transported.
- Rupture Detection and Response – INGAA members committed to developing a risk-based valve response and automation plan. Additionally, members met to consider the latest automation and rupture detection technologies.