More information on this topic is included in our Landowners Guide to Pipelines.
Interstate Natural Gas Pipelines
The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission is charged by Congress with evaluating whether interstate natural gas pipeline projects proposed by private companies should be approved. The Federal government does not propose, construct, operate, or own such projects. The Commission’s determination whether to approve such a project may affect you if your land is where a natural gas pipeline, other facilities, or underground storage fields might be located. It is important for you to know:
- How the Commission’s procedures work;
- What rights you have;
- How the location of a pipeline or other facilities is decided; and
- What safety and environmental issues might be involved.
Hazardous Liquid Pipelines and Intrastate Natural Gas Pipelines in WA State
Before a major hazardous liquid pipeline or intrastate natural gas pipeline can be sited, constructed, or operated in Washington, application must be made to the Energy Facility Site Evaluation Council (EFSEC).
EFSEC was created in 1970 to provide “one stop” licensing for large energy projects. By establishing the Council, the State Legislature centralized the evaluation and oversight of large energy facilities in a single location within state government. The Legislature called for “balancing” demand for new energy facilities with the broad interests of the public. As part of the balancing process, protection of environmental quality, safety of energy facilities, and concern for energy availability are all to be taken into account by the Council.
The Council’s responsibilities derive from the Revised Code of Washington (RCW) 80.50, and include siting large natural gas and oil pipelines, thermal electric power plants that are 350 megawatts or greater and their dedicated transmission lines, new oil refineries or large expansions of existing facilities, and underground natural gas storage fields.
To learn more about EFSEC’s process click here.