49 CFR § 195.12 - What requirements apply to low-stress pipelines in rural areas?

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§ 195.12 What requirements apply to low-stress pipelines in rural areas?

(a)General. This Section sets forth the requirements for each category of low-stress pipeline in a rural area set forth in paragraph (b) of this Section. This Section does not apply to a rural low-stress pipeline regulated under this Part as a low-stress pipeline that crosses a waterway currently used for commercial navigation; these pipelines are regulated pursuant to § 195.1(a)(2).

(b)Categories. An operator of a rural low-stress pipeline must meet the applicable requirements and compliance deadlines for the category of pipeline set forth in paragraph (c) of this Section. For purposes of this Section, a rural low-stress pipeline is a Category 1, 2, or 3 pipeline based on the following criteria:

(1) A Category 1 rural low-stress pipeline:

(i) Has a nominal diameter of 8 5/8 inches (219.1 mm) or more;

(ii) Is located in or within one-half mile (.80 km) of an unusually sensitive area (USA) as defined in § 195.6; and

(iii) Operates at a maximum pressure established under § 195.406 corresponding to:

(A) A stress level equal to or less than 20-percent of the specified minimum yield strength of the line pipe; or

(B) If the stress level is unknown or the pipeline is not constructed with steel pipe, a pressure equal to or less than 125 psi (861 kPa) gauge.

(2) A Category 2 rural pipeline:

(i) Has a nominal diameter of less than 8 5/8 inches (219.1mm);

(ii) Is located in or within one-half mile (.80 km) of an unusually sensitive area (USA) as defined in § 195.6; and

(iii) Operates at a maximum pressure established under § 195.406 corresponding to:

(A) A stress level equal to or less than 20-percent of the specified minimum yield strength of the line pipe; or

(B) If the stress level is unknown or the pipeline is not constructed with steel pipe, a pressure equal to or less than 125 psi (861 kPa) gage.

(3) A Category 3 rural low-stress pipeline:

(i) Has a nominal diameter of any size and is not located in or within one-half mile (.80 km) of an unusually sensitive area (USA) as defined in § 195.6; and

(ii) Operates at a maximum pressure established under § 195.406 corresponding to a stress level equal to or less than 20-percent of the specified minimum yield strength of the line pipe; or

(iii) If the stress level is unknown or the pipeline is not constructed with steel pipe, a pressure equal to or less than 125 psi (861 kPa) gage.

(c)Applicable requirements and deadlines for compliance. An operator must comply with the following compliance dates depending on the category of pipeline determined by the criteria in paragraph (b):

(1) An operator of a Category 1 pipeline must:

(i) Identify all segments of pipeline meeting the criteria in paragraph (b)(1) of this Section before April 3, 2009.

(ii) Beginning no later than January 3, 2009, comply with the reporting requirements of Subpart B for the identified segments.

(iii) IM requirements -

(A) Establish a written program that complies with § 195.452 before July 3, 2009, to assure the integrity of the pipeline segments. Continue to carry out such program in compliance with § 195.452.

(B) An operator may conduct a determination per § 195.452(a) in lieu of the one-half mile buffer.

(C) Complete the baseline assessment of all segments in accordance with § 195.452(c) before July 3, 2015, and complete at least 50-percent of the assessments, beginning with the highest risk pipe, before January 3, 2012.

(iv) Comply with all other safety requirements of this Part, except Subpart H, before July 3, 2009. Comply with the requirements of Subpart H before July 3, 2011.

(2) An operator of a Category 2 pipeline must:

(i) Identify all segments of pipeline meeting the criteria in paragraph (b)(2) of this Section before July 1, 2012.

(ii) Beginning no later than January 3, 2009, comply with the reporting requirements of Subpart B for the identified segments.

(iii) IM -

(A) Establish a written IM program that complies with § 195.452 before October 1, 2012 to assure the integrity of the pipeline segments. Continue to carry out such program in compliance with § 195.452.

(B) An operator may conduct a determination per § 195.452(a) in lieu of the one-half mile buffer.

(C) Complete the baseline assessment of all segments in accordance with § 195.452(c) before October 1, 2016 and complete at least 50-percent of the assessments, beginning with the highest risk pipe, before April 1, 2014.

(iv) Comply with all other safety requirements of this Part, except Subpart H, before October 1, 2012. Comply with Subpart H of this Part before October 1, 2014.

(3) An operator of a Category 3 pipeline must:

(i) Identify all segments of pipeline meeting the criteria in paragraph (b)(3) of this Section before July 1, 2012.

(ii) Beginning no later than January 3, 2009, comply with the reporting requirements of Subpart B for the identified segments.

(A)

(iii) Comply with all safety requirements of this Part, except the requirements in § 195.452, Subpart B, and the requirements in Subpart H, before October 1, 2012. Comply with Subpart H of this Part before October 1, 2014.

(d)Economic compliance burden.

(1) An operator may notify PHMSA in accordance with § 195.452(m) of a situation meeting the following criteria:

(i) The pipeline is a Category 1 rural low-stress pipeline;

(ii) The pipeline carries crude oil from a production facility;

(iii) The pipeline, when in operation, operates at a flow rate less than or equal to 14,000 barrels per day; and

(iv) The operator determines it would abandon or shut-down the pipeline as a result of the economic burden to comply with the assessment requirements in § 195.452(d) or 195.452(j).

(2) A notification submitted under this provision must include, at minimum, the following information about the pipeline: its operating, maintenance and leak history; the estimated cost to comply with the integrity assessment requirements (with a brief description of the basis for the estimate); the estimated amount of production from affected wells per year, whether wells will be shut in or alternate transportation used, and if alternate transportation will be used, the estimated cost to do so.

(3) When an operator notifies PHMSA in accordance with paragraph (d)(1) of this Section, PHMSA will stay compliance with §§ 195.452(d) and 195.452(j)(3) until it has completed an analysis of the notification. PHMSA will consult the Department of Energy, as appropriate, to help analyze the potential energy impact of loss of the pipeline. Based on the analysis, PHMSA may grant the operator a special permit to allow continued operation of the pipeline subject to alternative safety requirements.

(e)Changes in unusually sensitive areas.

(1) If, after June 3, 2008, for Category 1 rural low-stress pipelines or October 1, 2011 for Category 2 rural low-stress pipelines, an operator identifies a new USA that causes a segment of pipeline to meet the criteria in paragraph (b) of this Section as a Category 1 or Category 2 rural low-stress pipeline, the operator must:

(i) Comply with the IM program requirement in paragraph (c)(1)(iii)(A) or (c)(2)(iii)(A) of this Section, as appropriate, within 12 months following the date the area is identified regardless of the prior categorization of the pipeline; and

(ii) Complete the baseline assessment required by paragraph (c)(1)(iii)(C) or (c)(2)(iii)(C) of this Section, as appropriate, according to the schedule in § 195.452(d)(3).

(2) If a change to the boundaries of a USA causes a Category 1 or Category 2 pipeline segment to no longer be within one-half mile of a USA, an operator must continue to comply with paragraph (c)(1)(iii) or paragraph (c)(2)(iii) of this section, as applicable, with respect to that segment unless the operator determines that a release from the pipeline could not affect the USA.

(f)Record Retention. An operator must maintain records demonstrating compliance with each requirement applicable to the category of pipeline according to the following schedule.

(1) An operator must maintain the segment identification records required in paragraph (c)(1)(i), (c)(2)(i) or (c)(3)(i) of this Section for the life of the pipe.

(2) Except for the segment identification records, an operator must maintain the records necessary to demonstrate compliance with each applicable requirement set forth in paragraph (c) of this section according to the record retention requirements of the referenced section or subpart.

[76 FR 25587, May 5, 2011, as amended at 76 FR 43605, July 21, 2011]