November 03, 2021

Chairs DeFazio and Payne Applaud Final Rule to Expand Federal Oversight of Nation’s Natural Gas Gathering Pipelines

WASHINGTON, D.C.—Today, Chair of the House Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure Peter DeFazio (D-OR) and Chair of the Subcommittee on Railroads, Pipelines, and Hazardous Materials Donald M. Payne, Jr. (D-NJ) issued the following statements in response to the U.S. Department of Transportation Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration’s (PHMSA) release of a final rule establishing safety measures for onshore natural gas gathering pipelines:

“Yesterday’s final rule makes a significant step in closing an enormous hole in pipeline safety regulations,” Chair DeFazio said. “With this rule, which was initiated as a result of a congressional mandate a decade ago, PHMSA and the Biden administration are establishing federal safety standards for tens of thousands of miles of previously unregulated rural gas gathering lines, helping to increase the safety of our pipeline infrastructure in rural and lesser-populated areas, and reducing potent methane pollution at the same time. I applaud this rule and plan to continue working with the administration to make sure America’s pipelines are as safe and green as possible.” 

“I commend PHMSA for taking action to increase pipeline safety and further address greenhouse gas emissions,” Chair Payne, Jr. said. “This is a win for the environment and a win for communities near pipelines. It brings an additional 425,000 miles of pipelines under PHMSA oversight. It benefits rural communities at heightened risk for pipeline incidents with new safety standards and creates more pipeline jobs with upgrades to existing lines. As Chair of the Subcommittee on Railroads, Pipelines, and Hazardous Materials, I look forward to working with pipeline operators in the future to ensure they are in full compliance with this new rule.”

To learn more about PHMSA’s final rule, click here.