The Alberta Energy Regulator publishes its 2022 Pipeline Performance Report
CALGARY, AB, August 2, 2023 – The Alberta Energy Regulator (AER) has published the 2022 Pipeline Performance report, its annual publication featuring pipeline incident data from 2017 to 2022. The AER regulates oil and gas pipelines operated solely within the borders of Alberta, including natural gas, crude oil products, produced water, and sour gas.
In 2022, the total number of incidents decreased to 325, compared to 344 in 2021. Over the past 10 years, there have been about 40 per cent fewer incidents, even though the total pipeline kilometres grew by eight per cent in the same period.
Improvement in the incident rate is attributable to the AER’s continuous enhancement of pipeline requirements and inspections that focus on educating industry about pipeline safety. Concurrently, the industry itself has developed and adopted better pipeline practices.
Here are some report highlights:
- The number of high-consequence incidents decreased by 27 per cent from 11 incidents in 2021 to 8 incidents in 2022.
- 65 per cent of pipeline incidents resulted in little (less than one cubic metre or approximately eight barrels) to no substance liquid volume released.
- The top three high-consequence incidents make up 39 per cent of the total volume of hydrocarbon and salt/produced water released.
- Internal corrosion remains the leading cause of pipeline incidents (46 per cent of the total). More than 80 per cent of internal corrosion incidents occurred on uncoated steel pipelines, up from 76 per cent in 2021.
- Between 2021 and 2022, contact damage during digging increased 75 per cent (24 incidents in 2021 and 42 incidents in 2022). Contact damage is where an operator or a third party hits a pipeline accidentally.
The AER’s Industry Performance Program (IPP) measures, evaluates, reports on, and monitors industry’s performance. The IPP focuses on sharing information with Albertans and holding operators accountable by publicly and transparently reporting on industry performance.
About the Alberta Energy Regulator
The AER ensures the safe, efficient, orderly, and environmentally responsible development of energy resources in Alberta through our regulatory activities. For more information visit aer.ca.
Notes to editors
The Alberta Utilities Commission (AUC) regulates high-pressure gas utility pipelines in Alberta.