Regulatory

U.S. Senate Confirms Danly to FERC, Widening Republican Majority

The U.S. Senate on Thursday easily confirmed James Danly as a Republican member of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, widening the Republican majority on the panel.

Wisconsin Assembly to Vote on Bills Fighting Water Pollution

A bipartisan, $10 million package of more than a dozen bills designed to combat groundwater contamination in Wisconsin is slated for approval in the state assembly.

FERC Boosts Natural Gas in Lieu of Alternative Fuels

An order issued by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) in December against state subsidies for nuclear and renewable energy – called “out-of-market subsidies” – apparently gives a big boost to electric utilities using natural gas and the pipelines that feed them.

Washington Regulatory Outlook: Changes Could Benefit Industry in 2020

Two key Environmental Protection Agency(EPA) regulations could have a big impact on water and gas pipeline construction if they are completed this year.

Feds to Fund Water Infrastructure Projects in Four States

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced the availability of $2.7 billion for infrastructure projects that help protect surface water and provide safe drinking water to communities across the country.

Texas Railroad Commission Adopts New Pipeline Safety Rules

The Railroad Commission (RRC) of Texas has adopted new natural gas pipeline safety rules regarding the type of natural gas distribution pipelines that are allowed to be installed.

House Dems to Approve Tough Pipeline Bill

Democrats in the House are about to pass a new pipeline safety bill, which is unlikely to attract any Republican support. The Pipeline Safety Act (H.R. 5120), passed by two House committees in November with no GOP votes in favor, also clashes with the bi-partisan bill passed last summer by the Senate Commerce, Science and Transportation Committee.

Minnesotans Show Support for Line 3 Pipeline Replacement

A grassroots organization supporting the Line 3 replacement project said it has helped generate comments to the Minnesota Public Utilities Commission (MPUC) from nearly 7,500 people around the state who are in favor of the crude oil pipeline.

White House Unveils Plan to Speed Big Projects Permits

The Trump administration on Thursday unveiled a plan to speed permitting for major infrastructure projects like oil pipelines, road expansions and bridges, one of the biggest deregulatory actions of the president's tenure.

EPA Considers Cancelling Emission Control Requirements

The Environmental Protection Agency wants to relieve the gas transmission industry from compliance with 2012 and 2016 Clean Air Act standards related to volatile organic chemicals (VOC) and greenhouse gases, chiefly methane.

PHMSA Issues Major Gas, Hazardous Liquid Safety Rules

Years after receiving congressional directives to change safety laws – and similar suggestions from the National Transportation Safety Administration – the federal pipeline safety agency finally issued two major rules: one directed at interstate gas pipelines and the other at hazardous liquids pipelines.

Trump Administration Drops Obama-Era Water Protection Rule

The Trump administration revoked an Obama-era regulation that shielded many U.S. wetlands and streams from pollution but was opposed by developers and farmers who said it hurt economic development and infringed on property rights.

Fed Recommendations Based on 2018 Massachusetts Blasts

Federal officials are recommending stronger nationwide requirements for natural gas systems following last September's natural gas explosions and fires in Massachusetts.

South Carolina: Google can Pump Drinking Water for Servers

South Carolina is allowing Google to cool its servers by pumping nearly 550 million gallons of water annually from a declining aquifer.

Justices Seem Unsure if CWA Reaches to Wastewater Permits

The Supreme Court seems uncertain about how to decide a Hawaii case that will determine if a sewage treatment plant needs a federal permit to send treated wastewater deep underground.

Water Environment Federation Names MS4 Award Winners

Twenty-two high-performing municipalities and one university received recognition in the fifth annual National Municipal Stormwater and Green Infrastructure Awards, which celebrate administrators of municipal separate storm sewer systems (MS4s) that perform beyond regulatory requirements.

Columbia Gas Ordered to Seek State Approval for All Non-Emergency Work

Massachusetts officials are placing additional restrictions on the utility company blamed for last year’s destructive gas explosions following a major gas leak that prompted evacuations last week.

Enbridge Installing Supports for Great Lakes Oil Pipeline

Enbridge says it has begun installing steel supports on an oil pipeline in Michigan's Straits of Mackinac, where erosion has created a gap between the line and the lake bottom.

Trump Administration Drops Obama-Era Water Protection Rule

The Trump administration on Thursday revoked an Obama-era regulation that shielded many U.S. wetlands and streams from pollution but was opposed by developers and farmers who said it hurt economic development and infringed on property rights.

Sewage Dumping at Airport Caused No Contamination

State regulators say Rapid City Regional Airport did not cause contamination when it dumped sewage on its property last month.

EPA Launches 60-day Comment Period for Clean Water Act Changes

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) today issued a proposed rule to implement Section 401 of the Clean Water Act (CWA) intended to streamline the approval process for permits that are often an obstacle for pipelines and other infrastructure projects.

Texas Implements New Pipeline Safety Regulations

Texas’ natural gas utilities need to be ready for two new state pipeline safety programs: filing incident reports within one-hour of an accident, and removing underground cast-iron pipe by Dec. 31, 2021, used for natural gas delivery to end-use customers.

First Infrastructure Bill Emerges in Congress

House Democrats have introduced the first infrastructure package in Congress that would make significant new investments in broadband deployment and drinking water systems, among other areas. All 31 Democrats on the House Energy & Commerce Committee sponsored the LIFT America Act (H.R. 2741), which had a hearing in front of that committee on May 22, 2019.

Trump Says He’ll Push for $200 Million for Everglades Work

President Donald Trump says his administration will seek $200 million for federal work on watershed restoration in the Everglades this year.

Markwest Agrees to Payment for Pipeline Installation Issue

A subsidiary of Marathon Petroleum's MPLX midstream partnership agreed with West Virginia regulators to pay $124,030 for environmental violations related to a pipeline installation.

Water Treatment Plants Scramble to Meet Sludge Test Deadline

Wastewater treatment plants across Maine are working quickly to meet a deadline to begin testing municipal sludge for so-called forever chemicals.

Mass. Budgets Statewide Review of Natural Gas Systems

Gov. Charlie Baker has signed a spending bill that funds a statewide examination of Massachusetts’ natural gas distribution system. The review was ordered after the Sept. 13 gas explosions that killed one person, injured 25 others and damaged or destroyed dozens of buildings in the Merrimack Valley.

Miami-Dade Almost Out of Money for Federally Mandated Sewage System Upgrades

Miami-Dade County, Fla., is on the brink of running out of money to pay for federally mandated upgrades to its outdated sewage system. This revelation comes just days after more than 700,000 gallons of sewage dumped into Biscayne Bay from the last remaining pump station yet to be scheduled for repairs.

Breaking Records in a Conservation Park

Watercare Services of New Zealand engaged McConnell Dowell and McMillen Jacobs to increase the outfall capacity for its Army Bay Wastewater Treatment Plant. The project involved installing a new wastewater outfall, upgrading the existing pump station and building a new ultraviolet disinfection facility.

Washington Watch

By Stephen Barlas | Washington Editor GAO Highlights Potential Cyber Security Threats The Government Accountability Office (GAO) criticized the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) over its oversight of cybersecurity protection at interstate pipelines. The report essentially said the DHS’s Transp..