WASHINGTON, D.C. — The U.S. Department of Transportation’s Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA) announced Tuesday it will allocate $14.8 million in grants to help support improved pipeline safety initiatives. These grants are designed to focus on pipeline safety training, educational programming and resources as well as the advancement of pipeline safety technologies, per a release.
PHMSA’s mission is to “protect people and the environment by advancing the safe transportation of energy and other hazardous materials that are essential to our daily lives,” according to its website. It also establishes national policies, sets and enforces standards as well as educates and conducts research in order to try and prevent incidents.
“To ensure the safety of the world’s largest pipeline system, we need every level of government and the non-profit sector working to mitigate risk,” said Tristan Brown, PHMSA’s deputy administrator, in the release. “These grants will provide states, non-profits, first responders and academic institutions with the resources necessary to better protect the public.”
PHMSA is awarding grants for five of its programs across the country, including:
- $1.1 million in One-Call Grants to aid in damage prevention, as well as changes to their state underground damage prevention laws, related compliance activities, training and public education.
- $1.5 million in State Damage Prevention Program Grants for states to initiate or expand upon state programs related to prevention measures against damage to underground pipelines.
- $2 million in Technical Assistance Grants offered to local communities and groups of individuals on pipeline safety, including engineering and scientific analysis related to pipeline safety issues.
- $4.3 million of the Competitive Academic Agreement Program (CAAP), designed to expand the safety of carbon dioxide, hydrogen and higher-risk pipelines. Funding was allocated to six institutions, including:
- Texas A&M University
- University of Akron
- Rutgers University
- Arizona State University
- Marquette University
- University of Miami
- $5.8 million in Pipeline Emergency Response Grants for incident response activities prevalent to the transportation of gas or hazardous liquids by pipelines.
The grants were provided by the bipartisan Protecting Our Infrastructure of Pipelines and Enhancing Safety Act of 2020 that was enacted into law in December 2020.