API Updates Pipeline Systems Integrity Standard

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The American Petroleum Institute released the third edition of API Recommended Practice 1160 (RP 1160), “Managing System Integrity for Hazardous Liquid Pipelines.” RP 1160 provides a process for establishing safe pipeline operations, including robust assessments of potential risks and establishment of systems to safely and sustainably manage them throughout day-to-day operations.

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“Natural gas and oil provide the energy consumers need, and our nation’s energy infrastructure, including pipelines, enables Americans to enjoy modern conveniences in mobility, comfortable indoor temperatures, retail delivery and lighting,” said Debra Phillips, vice president of API’s global industry services (GIS) division, in a Feb. 27 statement. “A strong and reliable infrastructure system that prioritizes safety is not only in the best interest of our industry, but also for the environment and the consumers we serve.”

The update of RP 1160 advances the shared goal of a safe and sustainable natural gas and oil industry that meets the energy needs of consumers, Phillips said.

“Over the last 100 years, API has created over 700 standards to enhance the safety, efficiency and sustainability of our operations, while protecting the environment and the communities in which we operate. As operating conditions change and technology advances we develop and revise standards to improve operations and safety performance,” she added.

The third edition of RP 1160 incorporates recent industry experience about pipeline mechanics, while embracing a rigorous, proactive approach to safe pipeline operation (API RP 1173). This will help pipeline operators build a safe, contemporary, and comprehensive integrity management system. Additionally, the document contains references to leading industry publications, such as pipeline leak detection (API RP 1175), assessment and management of cracking in pipelines (API RP 1176), integrity data management and integration (API RP 1178), and hydrotechnical hazards for pipelines located onshore or within coastal areas (API RP 1133). The pipeline industry continues to support an industry-wide understanding and implementation of these standards.

API standards are developed under API’s American National Standards Institute accredited process, ensuring that the API standards are recognized not only for their technical rigor but also their third-party accreditation which facilitates acceptance by state, federal, and increasingly international regulators. API’s GIS division is responsible for standards setting, certification, training, events, publications and safety programs for industry operations.

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