July 13, 2017

Who regulates pipelines?

In the pipeline industry, safety comes first.

Whether it’s using quality materials, meeting high engineering standards, training operations employees or raising safety awareness, Phillips 66 and other pipeline operators invest heavily to protect our pipelines and the communities we’re in.

But as pipeline companies, we aren’t in this alone. Ours is a heavily regulated industry, and while we believe on our own that we have a responsibility operate safely, we are also held accountable to this effort by many federal and state government agencies created to keep the public and the environment safe.

Our commitment to complying with these regulations is one major reason that pipelines are rare and that pipelines remain the safest, most efficient and most reliable way to transport energy products.

Federal and state regulations set standards for our efforts and establish basic pipeline safety expectations. Phillips 66 collaborates with other pipeline companies regularly to share best practices for meeting these standards. In some cases operators even lend their expertise to federal agencies as the two groups develop recommendations for new regulations together.

The U.S. Department of Transportation’s Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA) is the federal regulatory agency responsible for inspecting pipelines and enforcing pipeline operation, construction and safety laws, while the Environmental Protection Agency enforces air and water quality standards and regulation. The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) handles permitting for natural gas pipelines and storage facilities.

In addition to these, the National Transportation Safety Board, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Bureau of Land Management, U.S. Forest Service and U.S. Coast Guard all have some oversight of the pipeline industry.

Lastly, at the state level, PHMSA works with state partner agencies to enforce federal regulations and conduct pipeline inspections. Phillips 66 works with the appropriate agencies in states where we operate. States may also set their own standards for pipeline safety.

For more information about pipelines, please visit phillips66pipeline.com.