One year of safe fuel delivery

Apr 13, 2016

One year of safe fuel delivery

Part of the process of generating safe, reliable power is making sure that the fuel for our power stations is delivered safely.

We’re celebrating a full year of operations of the Fortescue River Gas Pipeline (FRGP), a joint venture project of TransAlta and DBP Development Group (DDG), which delivers natural gas to TransAlta’s Solomon power station in the Pilbara, Western Australia.

The FRGP is the longest pipeline built in Western Australia in more than 10 years and one of the first pipelines into the heart of the Pilbara iron ore mining region.

“The FRGP is an important piece of energy infrastructure to safely fuel operations in the Pilbara. This is TransAlta’s first pipeline and is an example how we work with our customers to meet their power needs by providing sustainable, reliable electricity.”
– Keith Adams, operations manager, Pilbara

Land remediation

During the first year of operation, DDG worked to complete land remediation as part of ongoing safety measures for the pipeline. It begins in the construction process with the top soil being carefully removed and stored near the construction area. Once the pipeline is laid, the top soil is then reinstated and native vegetation is planted across the pipeline corridor.

After this work is completed, the next step is to monitor the land for ongoing safety of the pipeline and the surrounding area.

“Remediation works are a crucial part of ensuring that all pipeline risks are reduced to as low as reasonably practicable and are part of DDG’s ongoing commitment to ensure security of supply of natural gas for TransAlta’s operations. The FRGP, due to its remote location, can encounter extreme weather conditions which we closely monitor on an ongoing basis.”
Tawake Rakai, general manager of System, Design and Operations at DDG’s head office in Perth

Between November and April, tropical cyclones are typically experienced in the Pilbara during its wet season. With these storm risks, the DDG team closely monitors the pipeline corridor by aerial and road to look for sites that may need additional attention.

Once these sites were identified to be remediated, a crew of five from DDG and its subcontractor worked to correct erosion and sagging land along the pipeline route, ensuring continued protection and safety of the pipeline.

“The FRGP Joint Venture will continue to monitor and identify any potential defects or risks to pipeline operations as part of its frequent aerial and land pipeline inspections and ongoing maintenance work,” said Mr. Rakai.

24/7 safety

As an experienced operator and maintenance provider of the pipelines, DDG uses state-of-the-art computerized systems and regularly undertakes ground and aerial patrol of the pipeline corridor to ensure safety of the pipeline itself, and the surrounding area.

Safety is a top priority for both DDG and TransAlta with ongoing monitoring of the pipeline for reliable fuel delivery to the Pilbara.

Photos courtesy of DBP Development Group.
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