Background information and current status:
Accidents on international pipelines endanger human lives and the environment, cause important revenue losses and contribute to build a general public hostility towards pipelines.
A sectoral initiative aiming at developing a common regulatory basis in this sector has been proposed. The initiative would be based on the Recommendation L. The proposed initiative would identify best practice in technical regulations concerning project design, construction, testing, use of materials, operation, maintenance, conservation and utilization of pipelines for oil and gas industry products.
At the request of the Working Party (see para. 62 of the report of the 2008 session) a questionnaire has been developed by the interested delegations. The questionnaire was answered by Belarus, Brazil, Canada, Kazakhstan and Turkey. The purpose of the questionnaire is to document existing regulatory practices in this field. Answers to the questionnaire are welcome, if you wish your answer to be included in the document that will be made available at the Working Party Session in November 2009, please reply by end July 2009
The questionnaire and compiled answers were discussed by the Bureau of the Working Party (see para. 5 of the report) and will be presented to the WP. 6 19th session. The Working Party will then be called upon to decide on setting up the sectoral initiative and drawing up its terms of reference.
It should be noted that the proposed initiative would take into account in its work the results of the Joint Expert Group (JEG) on water and industrial accidents, a body under the auspices of the Conference of the Parties to the Convention on the Transboundary Effects of Industrial Accidents and the Meeting of the Parties to the Convention on the Protection and Use of Transboundary Watercourses and International Lakes.