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U.S. Department of Transportation U.S. Department of Transportation Icon United States Department of Transportation United States Department of Transportation

U.S. Transportation Secretary Elaine L. Chao Applauds Signing of Legislation to Reauthorize the Nation’s Pipeline Safety Program

Monday, December 28, 2020

PHMSA 10-20
Contact:  Ben Kochman

WASHINGTON – U.S. Transportation Secretary Elaine L. Chao today praised Congressional efforts to pass the Protecting our Infrastructure of Pipelines and Enhancing Safety (PIPES) Act of 2020. The legislation reauthorizes pipeline safety programs within the Department’s Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA).

“This important legislation will strengthen pipeline safety across our country, protect our communities and make energy transportation more reliable and affordable for all Americans,” said U.S. Transportation Secretary Elaine L. Chao.

In 2019, Secretary Chao forwarded a legislative proposal for pipeline safety to Congress that prioritized safety, promoted innovation, and encouraged a reliable U.S. energy infrastructure. 
The PIPES Act of 2020 allows the Department to further its investments in pipeline safety research and works to improve the safety of natural gas distribution pipelines, including strengthening requirements for distribution integrity management programs and mandating the adoption of safety management systems, among other provisions.

“Reauthorizing PHMSA’s pipeline safety program couldn’t come at a more crucial time and will have an immense impact on safety,” said PHMSA Administrator Skip Elliott.  “Thanks to Congress's actions, consumers and communities will benefit from this robust legislation, including a safer pipeline system, greater pipeline capacity, more innovation, and a heightened focus on safety culture among all stakeholders.”

The Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration’s mission is to protect people and the environment by advancing the safe transportation of energy and other hazardous materials that are essential to our daily lives.  Please visit for more information.