September 23, 2010
Natural Gas Pipeline Flaring May Be Seen For Miles
Austin Energy will be cleaning a natural gas pipeline near the far northwest boundary of the Decker Power Plant off of Lindell Lane. Before the cleaning can begin, residual gas left in the pipe after pipeline valves have been shut off must be flared or burned off through a controlled procedure.
The flaring will begin about 9 a.m. Monday, Sept. 27, and may last up to five hours. The flaring requires erecting a 60-foot flare stack that will emit a thin flame (2-inch diameter at top of stack) up to 20 feet in the air – that will then gradually lower in height as the gas dissipates. The flare will be visible for miles.
The maintenance work is considered routine for natural gas pipelines and will be performed by a contractor that specializes in pipeline cleaning. The flaring does not pose any danger to the public or the power plant.
Cleaning and video inspection of the 3.5 mile long pipeline within the plant will follow the flaring to remove any debris from the pipe that can damage generating equipment at the plant. The video inspection also enhances safety of the pipeline by identifying any potential problems in the pipe that need to be addressed.
The cleaning and inspection of the pipeline will take about one week to complete.