Large portions of our nation’s energy infrastructure historically were located within rural or sparsely populated areas. As communities have grown to develop suburbs with shopping centers, subdivisions and business parks – so has the need for increased pipeline infrastructure expansion and upgrades to continue to meet demands and maintain the existing system. Increasingly, energy infrastructure and stakeholders are engaging each other in these shared spaces across the country.
In order to protect the public and make informed land-use decisions, the Pipeline and Informed Planning Alliance was created as a collaborative effort by federal safety regulators and diverse organizations to develop best practices concerning development around pipeline infrastructure. Those recommendations can be found here.
Safety regulations also require companies to have public awareness programs to keep communities, first responders, public officials and those who live and work near pipeline infrastructure informed.
Always call before you dig!
Anytime you are planning a project on your property be sure to call 811 – the national Call Before You Dig Number. Pipeline companies will come out, free of charge, to mark any underground pipelines you may have nearby. Pipelines are marked with guide posts showing where they are below ground, but it is important to always dial 811 before starting a project as excavation damage continues to be leading cause for accidents that hurt or injure people.
The National Pipeline Mapping System is also a great resource for the public to learn more about where pipeline facilities may be located in your community. The mapping service provides county-level detail and has contact information for pipeline companies within your area.