How pipelines are prepared for deactivation

Pipeline companies must always ensure their operations remain safe for the public and the environment, even if a pipeline isn’t being used.

That’s why Canada’s transmission pipeline operators follow strict guidelines – set and monitored by the National Energy Board (NEB) – when pipelines are taken out of service. Those guidelines consider safety, environmental impacts and cost-effectiveness. And, of course, landowners are always consulted.

Pipeline Deactivation

One of the guidelines operators must follow when a pipeline is deactivated is to ensure the pipeline is scoured and completely clear of all oil and gas products.

In this brief video, a senior engineer from Enbridge explains the cleaning process involved in pipeline deactivation—including the use of “cleaning pigs,” brushes and chemical gel to scour the interior of a pipeline that’s been removed from service.

Video example of Pipeline Deactivation

(To watch the video, click on the above image to go to the Enbridge website)

Canadian Energy Pipeline Association (CEPA) members are continuously seeking to improve their performance through innovation and new technologies. They’re committed to ensuring safe and environmentally responsible operations throughout the pipeline life cycle.