The West Firm BLOG

New York Public Service Commission Announces Collaborative Proceeding Relative to Natural Gas Gathering and Distribution Lines

In a bold move, on October 19, 2017, the New York Public Service Commission (“PSC”) announced the initiation of a collaborative proceeding to address pipeline safety issues associated with natural gas gathering and distribution lines. From the perspective of Department of Public Service Staff (“Staff”), there is a need for the development of best practices to ensure New York’s role as a leader in pipeline safety. As part of this effort, Staff will identify protocols and identify all gathering lines subject to the jurisdiction of the PSC. All Commissioners of the PSC commented on the need for the collaborative proceeding mentioning odorization (which is already required in many instances) and the need for improvement of safety measures. Abandoned gathering lines and rights-of-way associated with these lines were also mentioned as issues of concern. This case will lead to a report to the PSC in six (6) months.

Any operator with natural gas gathering lines should participate in this proceeding. The West Firm has already indicated to Staff that it will be participating in this proceeding. Anyone seeking to combine resources should contact Managing Partner Tom West or Partner Greg Mountain.