The Texas pipeline industry supports regulatory oversight by state and federal agencies, however, it needs more regulatory certainty. As the demand for pipelines increases due to the shale boom and continuing population growth in the state, the industry must be able to rely on sound regulatory policies in order to construct and maintain the needed infrastructure. Unpredictability in regulations results in unnecessary delays and uncertainty for pipeline companies operating in Texas.
There is a common misunderstanding regarding the pipeline industry’s use of eminent domain, but it is never the preferred approach. If given the choice, pipeline companies would rather obtain property rights-of-way through fair, market-driven negotiations with landowners. Eminent domain delays projects, which increases time and costs for pipeline companies and negatively impacts consumers and communities. The vast majority of all pipelines built in Texas do not invoke eminent domain; in the aggregate, eminent domain is only used approximately five percent of the time.
TPA member companies’ safe, reliable, and efficient operations provide affordable fuel to power our economy and enhance the quality of our lives. Through the use of state-of-the-art equipment and best practices, protection of the environment is a top priority for the industry. TPA also strives to keep its members apprised of new and changing federal, state, and local regulatory requirements and environmental standards and provides guidance on how best to comply.
The substantial investment in emissions control technology by TPA members has yielded notable success. For example, the air quality in the Dallas/Ft. Worth area greatly improved during the past decade, even as natural gas production and transmission activity in the Barnett Shale play was expanding dramatically. TPA members are proud of this accomplishment and will build on this success in the future, as the pipeline industry continues to play a crucial role in helping meet the demands of our nation’s energy requirements.