The environmental impacts of gas drilling and production have dominated public debate around the shale gas boom and created new business opportunities for environmental consulting and service firms. But the shale gas business and its environmental issues—and the work to manage those issues—doesn’t end at wellheads. Part of the shale gas boom is a surge in investment in pipelines, compressor stations, gas processing facilities and other infrastructure to get natural gas and natural gas liquids from the shale plays to the end-use customers.
Given the vast size and broad extent of the existing long-haul pipeline network in the United States, however, most of the midstream investment is in gathering systems and short-haul pipelines. “The more traditional long-haul interstate pipelines were built out in the late 2008-2009 time frame, pre-shale, to bring gas from the West to the Northeast,” said Bob Reinhart, senior midstream project manager for environmental consulting and engineering (C&E) firm TRC Companies, which has a very active shale gas practice. “The midstream gas focus now is in gathering pipelines, processing capacity and lateral pipelines” to link new production to interstate pipelines.
Read the full article published in the Climate Change Business Journal.