Friday, December 14, 2012

Is PIPA led by PHMSA, or the other way around?

Executive Summary:

It seems like PIPA, under PHMSA, which is under US DOT
might be being led around by the oil+gas industry which are
trying to push their industry-friendly and rights-denying 
"model ordinances" (a la ALEC) on to unsuspecting local communities.

I've been researching oil and gas pipelines.

(I live in NY which the gas industry is trying to industrialize w/fracking)

I found something interesting which reminds me of ALEC,
the Koch Bros-connected American Legislative Exchange Council
which gets federal and state legislators to adopt industry-friendly
"model ordinances".

There are a few Federal Gov't regulatory bodies over pipelines:
1) DOE 2) FERC 3) EPA 4) DOT 5) NTSB.

Part of DOT is an org called PHMSA:

Pipelines and Informed Planning Alliance.

is pushing model ordinances on to local communities
on how to "mitigate risk" from pipelines through land planning.

I smell a rat:

Turns out PIPA's "stakeholder-members" are mostly oil and gas companies!
It seems like PIPA is basically a trade organization, yet the industry is claiming
that PHMSA is the "leader".

I first learned about PIPA via this video of Meghan Thoreau Jacquet with the Southern Tier Central Regional Planning & Development Board
(helps towns with land planning)

She talked about "Model Ordinances" which PIPA supplies to towns
regarding pipelines which use "best practices"...

This is all language sounds like that used by the KOCH BROS funded ALEC.

First, I found this curious: The gist of Meghan Thoreau Jacquet's message is that
if there are accidents with pipelines in neighborhoods,
it's not the pipeline's fault, no--
it's due to bad land planning


 The she starts suggesting people check out PIPA.
Some homeowners in Sissonville WV on 12/11/12
relaxing at home & enjoying their "amenity"
She even suggests that property values INCREASE near pipelines, and the homes nearest a pipeline right-of-way sell faster due to the "amenity".

(I'm not kidding-- check the video)

PIPA is promoted by
Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration
(PHMSA) which is part of the federal government (Department of Transportation)

The gas industry says "PIPA ... is led by the US Department of Transportation

Another industry source says: "PIPA is led and supported by PHMSA."

PIPA is a "stakeholder initiative" which is "led by PHMSA" (part of US DOT).
Only thing is, most of the stakeholders seem to be oil, gas and pipeline companies.

One "member" of PIPA is AOPL. Look who is a member of AOPL:

PIPA never says a community can use zoning to ZONE OUT pipelines and
gas infrastructure, only that they are inevitable and suggest land planners
build "consultation zones" around the pipelines.

They even have a non-profit "stakeholder":

It seems like PIPA, under PHMSA, under US DOT
might be another ALEC type organization,
being led around by the oil+gas industry which are
trying to push their rights-denying "model ordinances" on
to unsuspecting local communities.

May you, and all beings
be happy and free from suffering :)
-- ancient Buddhist Prayer (Metta)

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