Pipeline 101: Pipeline Routing Process

The second installment of our Pipeline 101 series focuses on the routing process. Mapping out the route of a pipeline is a very detailed process that involves many considerations. There are two main categories of products that pipelines transport: natural gas and liquids, like oil. Gas pipelines are regulated at the federal level while regulations of liquids pipelines are state by state. Even with these varied levels of regulation, all pipelines are required to meet or exceed federal safety standards.

The local community is heavily involved in the early stages of the pipeline process. Community members have the opportunity to learn more about the potential pipeline route and express concerns through community forums, town halls, and public hearings. Residents and local government officials play a critical role in the public commenting process and mapping the pipeline route. After local communities provide input on the project, thorough reviews take place at the state and federal level. This process takes several months, and even years, before construction can begin on the pipeline. Check out the video to learn more about this process!

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