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June 16 - June 20, 2014

A California utility wants the authority to remove trees and structures from private property if they threaten pipeline integrity. What do you think?

More items for Program/Project Management
Answers Votes
It's a public safety issue; the utility should have the final say. 30%
The property owner should have the final say. 16%
A third-party mediator should help the parties forge a compromise. 50%
Settle it in the courts, before a judge. 4%

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Tagged categories: Pipeline; Pipelines

Comment from Karen Fischer, (6/18/2014, 9:25 AM)

Another erosion of property rights.... If the pipeline came AFTER the structures, why should the property owner lose their house, garage, shed, barn etc;? When it comes down to it, this could mushroom into a lot of problems for millions of property owners who have a natural gas pipeline running in front of their houses as most Urban dwellers have. The text and meaning of new laws never remain the same, they morph into just more regulation & control. This is a land grab and an erosion of property rights, government handing over our rights to a mega-business.

Comment from Tom Schwerdt, (6/19/2014, 8:14 AM)

Not a lot of pipelines come AFTER the structures, if the structure is close enough to cause integrity concerns. Typically pipelines are installed open-trench. Lots cheaper that way.

Comment from M. Halliwell, (6/19/2014, 10:38 AM)

The mediator solution seems like the best option for those that are existing. Perhaps for future installations, the utilities need to look at routing their pipes within a small right-of-way. Then all you need in the right-of-way is agreements for maintenance (i.e. landowner gets a small stipend to do upkeep such as mowing the grass) but the utility can come in to prevent root issues (with proper restoration once the work is completed).

Comment from Karen Fischer, (6/19/2014, 12:26 PM)

Tom, this is not necessarily the case. In my geographical area, a pipeline was placed right on the property line between two residential properties. The homes (which existed at the time) are less than 50' from the buried pipeline. Emminent domain at work on that one. Property owners had NO say in it. It does happen...

Comment from Tom Schwerdt, (6/20/2014, 8:28 AM)

Karen, sure - it can happen that a pipeline is installed later near structures. However, it's a pretty big engineering screwup if the existing structures "threaten pipeline integrity" - which was the topic here. The engineering analysis performed before the pipeline goes in must take those structures into account.

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