On December 16, 2021, FERC ordered Energy Transfer Partners, LP and its subsidiary Rover Pipeline, LLC (âRover Pipelineâ) to explain why it should not pay a civil fine of $ 40 million for alleged violations of the Natural Gas Act and Certificate, during the construction of its 711-mile interstate gas pipeline.
The FERC Enforcement Office report (“OE Report”) concluded that in April 2017, crew members employed by Rover Pipeline contractors: 1) included diesel fuel, other toxic substances and unapproved activities in the drilling mud during its horizontal directional drilling operations; 2) failed to adequately monitor the pipeline right-of-way; and 3) improperly disposed of inadvertently released drilling mud that was contaminated with diesel fuel and hydraulic oil. The OE report alleges that while building a $ 6.7 billion pipeline project, Rover Pipeline added unapproved toxic fluids to combat drilling difficulties and keep up with demands for progress.
Rover Pipeline has 30 days to respond to the order, including requesting a change in the amount of the penalty. FERC staff will then have 30 days to respond.
A copy of the show cause order is available here.