AGA Safety Culture Statement

You Don’t Always Have
To Be Told What To Do
Christina Sames
Vice President Operations and Engineering
November 2011
Delivering natural gas that
fuels America’s way of life
• The American Gas Association (AGA),
founded in 1918
• Represents over 200 local natural gas
distribution companies that cleanly fuel
the way of life of 175 million Americans
• Members deliver 91% of the natural gas
in the US
Meeting our Nation’s Energy Needs
• CLEAN: Natural gas is the cleanest fossil fuel that
exists, and on an energy equivalent basis, emits 45
percent less CO2 than other fossil fuels.
• DOMESTIC: In 2010, 98 percent of the natural gas
consumed in the United States was produced in
North America.
• ABUNDANT: At current production rates, U.S.
natural gas resources are estimated to be more
than 2,000 trillion cubic feet (Tcf) – enough to last
100 years.
• EFFICIENT: 92 percent of the natural gas produced
is delivered to customers as usable energy.
• CREATES JOBS: Natural gas comprises almost
one-fourth of all energy used in the U.S. and is
directly linked to 3 million jobs and economic health.
Pipeline Safety Oversight
 Legislative
 Prescriptive Pipeline Safety Act (PIPES)
 Reauthorized every four years
 National oversight
 Federal standards: Baseline
 National Transportation Safety Board
 Investigates significant accidents
 Issues recommendations to DOT, states, industry, others
 States
 Adopt federal standards
 Add other requirements; state regs on the rise
 Public
 Want information and to be involved
AGA’s Role to Enhance Safety
Board of Directors Safety Committee
Safety Culture Statement
Commitment to Enhancing Safety
Best Practices Program
Plus: Conferences, workshops,
publications & technical papers, and
other actions
Commitment Starts at the Top
Board of Directors
Safety Committee
Board Safety
Implementation Task
AGA Board
Policy Committee
Operations Managing
AGA Board Safety Committee
 Focus Areas
Employee Safety
Gas Utility Contractor Safety
Customer Safety in Home
Pipeline Safety
 Recent Products
 Safety Culture Statement
 AGA’s Commitment to Enhancing Safety
 Annual Executive Leadership Safety Summit
(5 held to date)
 AGA Safety Information Resource Center
 Evergreen Safety Action Plan
AGA Safety Culture Statement
“The American Gas Association and its member
companies are committed to promoting positive
safety cultures among their employees. All
employees, and others providing services to AGA
members, are expected to place the highest priority
on employee, customer, public and pipeline safety.”
“A positive safety culture is one in which each
organization collects and processes information on
the current operating and safety status of our pipeline
systems and uses that information to take all
appropriate steps to maintain safe operations for the
public that we serve”
- Excerpts from AGA’s Safety Culture Statement
Commitment to Enhancing Safety
• Highlights AGA and its members commitment to
the continued enhancement of pipeline safety
• Commits to
• Proactive collaboration to improve safety
• Supporting development of reasonable
• Specific actions to help ensure the safe and
reliable operation of the nation’s 2.4 M miles
of natural gas pipeline
• Recognizes the significant role state regulators
play in supporting and funding these actions.
Specific Actions
Expand OQ to new construction
QA/QC procedures associated with construction
ASV/RCVs and EFVs on new lines
Advancing IMP programs and principles
Developing guidelines for data management
Processes/guidelines that enable tracking/traceability
Support strong enforcement of 811
Improve engagement between operator & excavator
ID/implement models to enhance safety knowledge
Evaluate & implement ways to improve communications
on the presence of PLs
Partner with emergency responders
Increase awareness of PIPA
Increasing investment and participation in R&D
Other Actions to Raise the Bar on Safety
• “Smart modernization” of infrastructure
• Determine a PL’s fitness for service
• Action based on condition, not age, material or
lack of coating
• Must take into account impact on customer
• Stay focused on current key initiatives to
improve safety
• DIMP, TIMP, damage prevention, industry’s
voluntary initiates, public awareness, control
room mgmt., etc
• Exchange/share best practices, lessons
AGA Operations Best Practices Program
• Identifies procedures of top-performing companies
and innovative work practices that may be used to
continuously evaluate and improve participants’
unique operating systems
• Three focus areas:
• Benchmarking
• Roundtables
• Questionnaires
Other Actions to Improve Safety
Safety Information Sharing Study
• Joint project of the US and Canadian
Pipeline Trade Associations (RCP
• Comprehensive study to explore initiatives
currently utilized by other sectors in the
economy, as well as the pipeline industry
• Hope to identify and implement a model
that will measurably improve PL safety
• Study to be completed as early as 2/12
Other Actions to Improve Safety
Publications to ensure consistency
• Fitness for Service (Distribution, Transmission)
• Automatic & Remote Control Shutoff Valves
• Excess Flow Valves beyond SFHs
• Records
• Plus many more…
Challenges Vary
• Diversity of systems and local economies
• Older cities may require significant investment for
modernizing the infrastructure
• Younger cities may have expanding population/tax
base and relatively new infrastructure
• Commissions and operators must continue to provide
customers with natural gas safely, reliably and cost
• Must manage existing infrastructure and finance “smart
AGA’s messages
• Support thoughtful legislation and
• Diversity of systems and local economies
• Commissions and operators must
continue to provide customers with
natural gas safely, reliably and cost
• Must manage existing infrastructure and
finance “smart modernization”
• AGA is committed to working with other
stakeholders to continue to enhance
Christina Sames
Vice President, Operations and Engineering
[email protected]

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