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Natural Gas Pipeline Siting Act

The Natural Gas Transmission Pipeline Siting Act (NGTPSA), Sections 403.9401-.9425, Florida Statutes, is the state's process for licensing the construction and operation of natural gas pipelines within Florida.

Responsibilities for Permitting Natural Gas Pipelines

  • The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission regulates interstate natural gas transmission and reviews proposals to build interstate natural gas pipelines.
  • The Florida Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) handles in-state environmental regulatory matters for wetlands crossings, discharge of hydrostatic test waters and other applicable areas.
  • Other state and local agencies may also be involved in regulatory matters for intrastate natural gas pipelines.

What is a Transmission Pipeline?
A transmission pipeline transports gas from a gathering line or storage facility to a distribution center or storage facility. A transmission pipeline may also transport gas within a storage field.

Natural gas pipelines that are exempt from the NGTPSA include:

  • Pipelines that do not cross a county line or are less than 15 miles in length.
  • Pipelines owned and operated by a local distribution company.
  • Pipelines being licensed as an associated facility under the Power Plant Siting Act.

Applicants (see NGTPSA application guide) may use the licensing process under the NGTPSA for projects exempt from the Act (see NGTPSA applicability flow chart).

Certification Process for Transmission Pipelines:
The certification process and procedural requirements (see NGTPSA certification process flow chart) are similar to those for electrical transmission lines, including the ability of parties to propose alternate corridors and the possibility that an alternate corridor will be the one certified.

A difference between the two Acts is that electrical transmission corridors can be up to a mile wide, while under the NGTPSA, corridors can only be one-third mile wide. This reduces the amount of area to be reviewed and the number of people who may potentially be affected by the pipeline.

As with transmission lines, safety and land ownership questions frequently arise about natural gas pipeline location. In Florida, safety jurisdiction for natural gas pipelines lies with the Public Service Commission, but DEP's Siting Coordination Office can answer questions or recommend an appropriate contact at the Public Service Commission.

Regarding land ownership, utilities typically offer to buy land necessary for a project at fair market value and an agreeable sale is negotiated. However, certification does empower the company with the right of eminent domain.

Procedural Rules for Natural Gas Transmission Pipelines
The procedural rule for Natural Gas Transmission Pipeline is Chapter 62-807, Florida Administrative Code. All nonprocedural rules that would otherwise apply to such a facility also apply to a certified facility.

No projects have been certified under the Natural Gas Pipeline Siting Act.

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Last Modified:
September 13, 2017 - 12:25pm

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