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Public Gas News Inside This Issue

2

Shaheen-Portman Bill Update

3

APGA Presents Two Special Recognition Awards During May Meeting

3

APGA Submits ENERGY STAR Dryer Comments

4

SIF Programs Highlighted at New Mexico Gas Association Conference

5

APGA Files Motion to Intervene in Midla Pipeline Abandonment

6

Louisiana Natural Gas Utilities Call for Section 5 Reform

7

APGA Submits Comments on Criteria for Water Heaters

7

Upcoming APGA Educational Webinar: DOE Home Scoring Tool

7

EPA Revises Definition of Waters of the U.S.

7

APGA Member Discount for the 2014 Esri Electric and Gas GIS Conference

2014 APGA Annual Conference The 2014 APGA Annual Conference will take place July 20-23 at the Resort at Squaw CreekTM in Lake Tahoe, California. Register to attend or exhibit at www.apga.org/laketahoe.

May 19, 2014 Volume 33 Number 10

APGA Members Hit the Hill

(left picture) APGA Government Affairs Director Dan Lapato (left) with Dave Kearney of Richmond Dept. of Public Utilities, Va. (right picture) Mason Parsaye of Colorado Springs Utilities, Colo. (left) with APGA Government Affairs Director Scott Morrison.

APGA members came to Washington, D.C. on May 6 and 7 to take part in the 2014 APGA Government Relations Conference and to meet with lawmakers on Capitol Hill. APGA holds an annual Government Relations Conference in Washington, D.C. as part of the Spring Board meeting, which usually occurs in May. In addition to receiving updates on key natural gas issues, another critical component of this event is that APGA members meet with their congressional delegations. Having congressional representatives hear directly from their constituents on key issues of interest to public gas systems has greatly helped APGA’s advocacy efforts. As has occurred in previous years, many members of the APGA Public Gas Policy Council attended this year’s event to participate in meetings on the Hill. The Public Gas Policy Council is made up of elected and appointed officials from public gas communities. Nomi-

nations for new members of the Public Gas Policy Council will be sent out in the fall. At this year’s meeting, APGA members met with approximately 50 congressional offices to communicate their views on important legislative issues. Issues that were raised on Capitol Hill included the export of liquefied natural gas (LNG), the protection of tax-exempt financing for local communities, the repeal of the ban on fossil fuel generated energy in new or modified federal buildings and its replacement with technologyneutral energy efficiency targets. The 2015 APGA Government Relations Conference is scheduled for April 28 and 29. We hope you will make plans to attend this important event. If you have any questions on this year’s conference, please contact Dave Schryver, Scott Morrison, or Dan Lapato of APGA staff by phone at 202-464-2742 or by email at dschryver@apga.org, smorrison@ apga.org, or dlapato@apga.org.


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www.apga.org

May 19, 2014

Shaheen-Portman Bill Update

APGA Public Gas News

Publisher: Bert Kalisch Editor: Audrey Anderson Writers: APGA Staff Layout: Marghet Hager For questions and comments: Please contact Audrey Anderson, APGA Marketing & Communications Manager, at 202-464-2742 or by email at aanderson@apga.org Public Gas News is published biweekly by the American Public Gas Association Copyright 2014 American Public Gas Association All rights reserved. This is intended for actual subscriber use only. You may not forward, distribute, copy or republish this newsletter in any manner without the express written consent of the American Public Gas Association.

On May 12, the Shaheen-Portman bill succumbed to election year politics. The procedural motion to end debate on the energy bill without amendments fell five votes short of the 60 votes needed for approval. The demise of the Shaheen-Portman bill also sealed the fate of the pipeline measure. Senate Democratic leaders said the pipeline vote could occur only after Senate action on an unamended energy bill. The bill failed 55-36 despite the fact that seven Republicans cosponsored the bill. Of the Republican cosponsors, Senators Ayotte (R-N.H.), Collins (RMaine) and Portman (R-Ohio) voted to cut off debate and proceed to final passage, while Senators Hoeven (R-N.D.), Isakson (R-Ga.) and Wicker (R-Miss.) voted to maintain the filibuster, and Senator Murkowski (R-Alaska) was absent for the vote. With the efficiency bill dead, Senator Reid (D-Nev.) is not expected to allow a Keystone XL vote. However, even if he had, supporters of the pipeline ac-

knowledged last week that they would have remained short of the 60 votes necessary for it to eventually pass. Supporters of a popular energy savings bill and the controversial Keystone XL oil pipeline say they will keep trying to force Senate action on the measures, even after they were defeated amid partisan gridlock in the Senate. It remains to be seen whether this vote to block the efficiency bill portends an inability for the upper chamber to get anything done in the nearly six months remaining until the midterm election, but the bill’s death does not send encouraging signals, at least when it comes to energy legislation. Next up on the Senate’s agenda is another broadly popular bipartisan measure, the so-called tax extenders bill that would reinstate about 50 lapsed business tax breaks. For questions on this article, please contact Dan Lapato of APGA staff by phone at 202-464-2742 or by email at dlapato@apga.org.

Summer 2014 Lifestyle Source Now Available

APGA is excited to announce the release of The Lifestyle Source, an electronic magazine intended to be a marketing tool for our public gas utility members to send to their customers and community. This eMagazine is free for APGA members to use. We encourage you to distribute the link to the magazine to your customers on your utility website, social media, billing statement emails, or any other communication or publication to better raise the profile of natural gas. The Summer 2014 issue is now available and features articles on: • The Best Way to Grill Comes Naturally • The Cookbook • Natural Gas Delivers for America • Know What’s Below • Prepare for Hurricane Season • Efficient Homes • Don’t Fall for Utility Bill Scams

Go to www.apga.org/lifestyleS14 to get the link to the eMagazine. APGA members get The Lifestyle Source for free. If you have any questions, please contact Audrey Anderson of APGA staff by phone at 202-464-2742 or by email at aanderson@apga.org.


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www.apga.org

May 19, 2014

APGA Presents Two Special Recognition Awards During May Meeting

(left picture) APGA Chairman Matt Ballard of Sevier County Utility District, Tenn. presented Skip Horvath of the Natural Gas Supply Association with APGA’s Lifetime Achievement Award. (right picture) APGA Chairman Matt Ballard of Sevier County Utility District, Tenn. presented Richard Kolodziej of Natural Gas Vehicles for America with APGA’s Lifetime Achievement Award.

At the May 4-7 Board and Committee meetings held in Washington, D.C., APGA presented two special recognition awards, which had previously been approved by the APGA Board of Directors. The first special recognition award was presented to Skip Horvath, former President & CEO of the Natural Gas Supply Association, in appreciation for his “leadership and endless pursuit to improve the safe, reliable, efficient, and affordable delivery of natural gas to America’s industries, homes, and businesses.” The Natural Gas Supply Association represents major integrated and large independent domestic producers of natural gas and Skip Horvath served

as President & CEO of the organization beginning in 1999. In his remarks to APGA members, he discussed the critical role natural gas can continue to play as well as potential threats, such as methane emission regulations, to its production and use. A special recognition award was also presented to Rich Kolodziej who currently serves as President of NGVAmerica. NGVAmerica is a national organization dedicated to the development of a growing, profitable, and sustainable market for vehicles powered by natural gas or biomethane. NGVAmerica represents more than 200 companies, environmental groups, and government organiza-

tions interested in the promotion and use of natural gas and biomethane as transportation fuels. In presenting the award, APGA’s Chairman, Matt Ballard, expressed appreciation for Rich Kolodziej for NGVAmerica’s efforts to advance the development and deployment of natural gas vehicles thereby enhancing U.S. energy and national security. If you have any questions on this article, please contact Dave Schryver of APGA staff by phone at 202-4642742 or by email at dschryver@apga. org.

APGA Submits ENERGY STAR Dryer Comments

On May 5, APGA submitted a joint letter with the American Gas Association to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) concerning their proposed revisions to the ENERGY STAR Emerging Technology Award criteria for advanced clothes dryers. The fundamental issue with these standards is they don’t consider the benefits of natural gas dryers. EPA’s proposed recognition criteria for the ENERGY STAR Emerging Technology Award program for advanced clothes dryers

along with the fact that natural gas dryers are not eligible for the award could mislead consumers about available clothes drying products that achieve the lowest overall energy consumption, cost and environmental impact. When a standard 2015 model natural gas clothes dryer is compared to an advanced electric dryer with a combined energy factor (CEF) of 4.3, the natural gas appliance’s operating costs, total energy consumed, and greenhouse gas emissions are lower.

Like the water heater proposal, the omission of natural gas dryers from this program will only further eschew the market further towards electric clothes dryers. For questions on this article, please contact Dan Lapato of APGA staff by phone at 202-464-2742 or by email at dlapato@apga.org.


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www.apga.org

May 19, 2014

SIF Programs Highlighted at New Mexico Gas Association Conference

John Erickson, Chief Operating Officer of the APGA Security and Integrity Foundation (SIF), briefed over 100 attendees on the programs and services of the SIF at the New Mexico Gas Association’s Pipeline Safety Conference held in Santa Fe, N.M.

On May 7, John Erickson, Chief Operating Officer of the APGA Security and Integrity Foundation (SIF), briefed over 100 attendees on the programs and services of the SIF at the New Mexico Gas Association’s Pipeline Safety Conference held in Santa Fe, N.M. The SIF is best known for its Simple, Handy, Risk-based Integrity Management Plan (SHRIMP) program that helps users create distribution integrity management plans. There are 27 SHRIMP users in New Mexico. John described recent improvements and enhancements that are planned for 2014. The SIF is constantly modifying SHRIMP based on feedback from state pipeline safety inspections of SHRIMP users. The SIF strives to meet not only the letter and intent of the regulation but also the expectations of the state regulators even if those expectations go beyond the letter of the rules. John also described the drug and alcohol (D&A) plan creation tool that has been available for several years.

It is not as well known as SHRIMP, but works just like SHRIMP – asking questions about the user’s system to create a drug and alcohol plan that is suited for the user’s needs. Over 60 systems are using the D&A tool and he encouraged those attending to consider it if they find deficiencies in their D&A plans. There was interest expressed in learning more about the SIF’s operator qualification (OQ) training and evaluations. The SIF trainer/evaluator conducts training and evaluation at locations convenient to the people seeking the training and evaluation so that travel costs and time away from work are minimized. The SIF can also provide free operations and maintenance (O&M) procedures that utilities can download and modify for their needs. The procedures exactly match the SIF training and evaluations to ensure consistency between the operator’s O&M and OQ plans. Next up on the SIF’s agenda is to create a SHRIMP-like tool to create

manuals for operation, maintenance and emergency response. This will include smart phone and tablet applications to collect construction, inspection and maintenance data from the field and store it on the operator’s computer and/or the SIF website. These should be available in 2015. John also mentioned the APGA GOAL program for conducting public awareness evaluation surveys for customers and non-customers living near gas lines. States have recently completed audits of operators’ public awareness plans and many were cited for inadequate effectiveness assessments. APGA took great care to ensure that GOAL surveys are statistically valid and nearly 200 systems are using GOAL. GOAL is still accepting new subscribers. Information on GOAL can be found at www.apga.org/ GOAL. John also discussed the API Recommended Practice on Pipeline Safety Management Systems that is currently being developed. While only a recommended practice, APGA fears it may someday become mandatory by incorporation into pipeline safety rules, just as the recommended practice for public awareness became mandatory in 2004. A show of hands indicated few in the audience were aware of this effort. John encouraged them to get involved when the draft is put out for public comment and ballot later this year. For questions on this article, please contact John Erickson of APGA staff by phone at 202-464-2742 or by email at jerickson@apga.org.


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May 19, 2014

APGA Files Motion to Intervene in Midla Pipeline Abandonment

On May 2, APGA filed a motion to intervene in protest of an application filed by ArcLight Capital Partners, a hedge fund based in Boston, to abandon the Midla pipeline in Louisiana which provides service to customers in Louisiana and Mississippi, including public natural gas systems. A letter sent by the new pipeline owner to customers last November stated that the 87-year-old, 370-mile pipeline did not pose an imminent safety threat but the company cannot be certain of that and will not wait for a catastrophic event such as the one that occurred in San Bruno, Calif., in 2010 to take action. The letter communicated that the pipeline needs to be shut down and/or

replaced in an orderly yet expeditious manner. Abandonment of the pipeline would mean no more natural gas service for the affected public natural gas systems. Given that 95 percent of public natural gas systems are captive to one pipeline, APGA is very concerned that abandonment under these circumstances would establish a dangerous precedent for other pipelines serving captive customers. In its filing, APGA communicates that, among other things, there are many well-functioning interstate pipelines in this country with facilities as old or older than Midla’s and that customers pay just and reasonable rates, which include

allowance for operation and maintenance, as well as a return on and of capital, so that pipelines have the wherewithal to maintain their facilities in good working order. APGA’s filing also states that abandonment under these circumstances would not meet the Natural Gas Act’s “public convenience and necessity” standard for granting abandonment. A copy of the motion to intervene in protest is available on the APGA website at www.apga.org/filings. If you have any questions on this article, please contact Dave Schryver of APGA staff by phone at 202-464-2742 or by email at dschryver@apga.org.

Job Opening: Utilities Director, New Ulm, Minn. Salary Range $108,472 to $114,088

The Public Utilities Commission (PUC) of New Ulm, MN (pop. 14,000) is seeking qualified candidates to plan, organize and direct the operations of our five utility divisions: electric production; electric distribution; gas; water/steam; and wastewater treatment plant. Our utility, with an annual budget of 41M, requires demonstrated leadership, organizational, communication and personnel management skills, as well as familiarity with the technologies associated with the utilities industry. A Bachelor’s degree in engineering, business, public administration or a related field and extensive supervisory and managerial background in either a public or private sector utility environment are required. Position offers a compensation range of $108,472 to $114,088 and a competitive benefit program. Send resume detailing your education, experience and utility administrative background to Human Resources Director, 100 N. Broadway, New Ulm, MN 56073 or e-mail to personnel@ci.new-ulm.mn.us not later than 4:30 p.m., Tuesday, June 10, 2014. To learn more about us or this position call (507) 359-8236 or visit www.ci.new-ulm.mn.us. EOE

2014 Marketing & Sales Award Now Open

The APGA Marketing & Sales Award is an annual award to recognize APGA public natural gas systems who have worked hard to market natural gas this past year. Systems of all sizes are encouraged to submit their innovative and successful marketing programs, branding initiatives or customer service campaigns for consideration and recognition. The five award categories are:

• System Growth Program • CNG Program • Consumer Education Program • Advertising Program • Digital Marketing Program Please note that you must fill out separate forms for each category you wish to enter. The 2014 Marketing and Sales Award will be open for submissions April 28-June 10, 2014. Winners will be notified in June and the awards

will be presented at the 2014 APGA Annual Conference in Lake Tahoe, Calif. Systems may submit entries to any number or variation of categories at www.apga.org/MSaward. If you have any questions on the award, please contact Audrey Anderson of APGA staff by phone at 202-464-2742 or by email at aanderson@apga.org.


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www.apga.org

May 19, 2014

Louisiana Natural Gas Utilities Call for Section 5 Reform

On May 12, 25 municipal gas systems from Louisiana sent a letter to Senator Mary Landrieu (D-La.), Chairman of the Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Resources, calling for reform of Section 5 of the Natural Gas Act. Currently, rates charged by interstate pipelines are regulated by the Federal Regulatory Energy Commission (FERC). If a customer of a pipeline believes they have been charged beyond a “just and reasonable” rate, they can file a complaint against the interstate pipeline at FERC. If the pipeline is found by FERC to be overrecovering, FERC can only change the rate prospectively from the date of the conclusion of the complaint; in other words, customers that have been overcharged cannot be refunded. This lack of refund authority has cost natural gas consumers $2.7 billion from 2008 to 2012, according to a Natural Gas Supply Association study.

In response to the letter, Bert Kalisch, APGA President and CEO, said, “Amending Section 5 of the Natural Gas Act will provide FERC with the badly needed authority to protect natural gas customers from rampant overrecovery by interstate pipeline monopolies. We urge Chairmen Landrieu to heed the call of her constituents, and move expeditiously to protect Louisiana businesses and homeowners by passing legislation that reforms Section 5.” The following Louisiana systems signed onto the letter: • City of Denham Springs • East Baton Rouge Parish, GUD 1 • Livingston Parish Gas District 1 • Maringouin Utility • Village of Montpelier GUD 1 of Vernon Parish • East Feliciana Gas Utility District 1 • Town of Kentwood • Town of Livonia • Town of Melville

• • • • •

Town of Jackson City of Clinton City of Scott City of Walker City of DeQuincy Village of Forest Hill • Gas Utility District 1 of West Feliciana Parish • St. James Parish • Town of Jonesville • Town of Logansport • Village of Estherwood • Town of Carencro • Town of Slaughter • Town of St. Francisville • Village of Tangipahoa A copy of this letter can be found at www.apga.org/correspondence. If you have any questions about this article, please contact Dan Horning of APGA staff by phone at 202-464-2742 or by email at dhorning@apga.org.

Job Opening: Gas System Engineer, Greenville Utilities, N.C. Salary Range $77,626 - $116,459 | Online applications only accepted thru GUC website at www.guc.com. Greenville Utilities, a progressive electric, gas, and water utility company is offering an opportunity for an experienced engineer to fill the Gas Systems Engineer position within the Gas Department. The successful applicant will be responsible for administering engineering, construction and other contracts and providing project management for large/complex projects; performing various analysis tasks and duties relative to improving the overall efficiency and effectiveness of the gas distribution system; developing and implementing corrosion control measures; monitoring and projecting gas system capacity requirements and determining if curtailments to interruptible customers are necessary; and directing, supervising and coordinating the activities related to the operation, maintenance and modification of the liquefied natural gas (LNG) peak-shaving facility and the supervisory control and data acquisition (SCADA) system. Applicant must have a Bachelor’s of Science Degree in Engineering (PE preferred) and a minimum of three years’ experience with a utility company. Also, computer and analytical skills, experience in administering construction contracts and supervisory experience are preferred. Excellent written and oral communication skills are required. Applications accepted until filled. Employment is contingent upon passing a physical examination including a drug/alcohol screening and a comprehensive background check. To ensure consideration, a completed Greenville Utilities application must be received in the Human Resources Office. Interested persons can contact the Human Resources Office at (252) 551-1513 if you have any questions. Our office is located on 801 Mumford Road, Greenville, NC. “An Equal Opportunity Employer/Affirmative Action Employer” “Greenville Utilities Commission participates in E-Verify”


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www.apga.org

May 19, 2014

APGA Submits Comments on Criteria for Water Heaters

On April 30, APGA submitted comments to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) regarding the proposed revisions to the ENERGY STAR criteria for residential water heaters. The current proposal would eliminate any current natural gas water heaters over 55 gallons from the ENERGY STAR program and tilt the market 100 percent towards electric water heater appliances.

Because this program is led by EPA, APGA’s comment letter highlighted the fact that the ENERGY STAR program must be fuel neutral—which it clearly is not—as well as the need to use full-fuel cycle. APGA pointed out the fact that the ENERGY STAR Portfolio Manger program is already utilizing and promoting the source-based energy analysis, the environmental benefits of using natural gas, and the

cost to the consumer to operate a natural gas appliance versus an electric appliance. For questions on this article, please contact Dan Lapato of APGA staff by phone at 202-464-2742 or by email at dlapato@apga.org.

Upcoming APGA Educational Webinar: DOE Home Scoring Tool DOE Home Scoring Tool - June 5 at 3 p.m. EST: Join APGA for an overview of DOE’s The Home Energy Score Tool. The tool is similar to a vehicle’s mile-per-gallon rating. The Home Energy Score allows homeowners to compare the energy performance of their homes to other homes nationwide. It also provides homeowners with suggestions for improving their homes’ efficiency. Learn more about DOE’s Home Scoring Tool at energy.gov/eere/buildings/homeenergy-score. Register online for this webinar at www.apga.org/webinars for APGA educational webinars. Free for APGA members!

EPA Revises Definition of Waters of the U.S.

On May 1, APGA joined other trade associations in a meeting with staff from the offices of Senators Hoeven (R-N.D.) and Johanns (R-Neb.) to discuss the joint EPA and Army Corp of Engineers’ expansion of the Clean Water Act’s definition of the “Waters of the U.S.” The revised definition would expand EPA’s and the Army Corp of Engineers’ jurisdiction. This will impact

the natural gas industry and further hinder the expansion of pipelines. This will also add additional regulatory impact on the ability of APGA members to replace and expand their distribution systems. Both senators recognize the significant impact this regulation will have on agriculture, mineral extraction and the construction industry. APGA is working with other trade groups to en-

sure that the proposed EPA rulemaking is based on sound environmental and economic analysis. For questions on this article, please contact Dan Lapato of APGA staff by phone at 202-464-2742 or by email at dlapato@apga.org.

APGA Member Discount for the 2014 Esri Electric and Gas GIS Conference

The 2014 Esri Electric and Gas GIS Conference held October 26-29 in Memphis, Tenn., will connect you with your fellow electric and gas GIS users to share tips and ideas and learn new applications of GIS. Registration, Agenda, Exhibit and full event details are at www.esri.com/events/electric-gas. APGA members receive a 5 percent discount with the following code: ESRI14APGA This conference is a major resource for professionals from all types and sizes of electric and gas utility organizations. Whatever your position or

GIS experience, bring your team and find out how GIS innovation is helping utilities everywhere become more successful today.

Why Should You Attend? • The 2014 Esri Electric and Gas GIS Conference will help you see the latest maps, apps, and solutions for utilities. • Stretch GIS beyond mapping to secure funding, upgrade infrastructure, and drive marketing. • Approach new government regulations with knowledge-driven analysis.

• Get ready for emergencies and outages by taking maps to the field and sending data to the cloud. • Network with peers to learn best practices and receive industry recognition. • Find out how to use ArcGIS as a platform and increase return on investment. If you have any questions on the 2014 Esri Electric and Gas GIS Conference, please email egug@esri. com.


PRESORTED FIRST CLASS US POSTAGE PAID DULLES, VA PERMIT NO. 349

AMERICAN PUBLIC GAS ASSOCIATION

201 Massachusetts Ave NE Suite C-4 Washington, DC 20002 Phone: 800-927-4204 路 Fax: 202-464-0246 www.apga.org

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www.apga.org

May 19, 2014

2014 APGA Annual Conference

Registration is now open for the 2014 APGA Annual Conference on July 20-23 at the Resort at Squaw Creek in Lake Tahoe, California. 2014 APGA Annual Conference agenda, attendee & exhibitor registration, sponsorship opportunities are available at www.apga.org/laketahoe.

Hotel Accommodations & Conference Location

Resort at Squaw Creek in Lake Tahoe, California, 400 Squaw Creek Road, Olympic Valley, CA Make your hotel reservations by calling (800) 403-4434 or by visiting the resort website at www.apga.org/squawcreek (APGA Group Code 34L2R8).


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