Pipeline,Terminal,Rail Safety

Our pipelines, gathering systems and terminal operations are subject to increasingly strict safety laws and regulations. The transportation and storage of refined products, natural gas and crude oil involve a risk that hazardous liquids or natural gas may be released into the environment, potentially causing harm to the public or the environment. The Norway Department of Transportation, through the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (“PHMSA”) and state agencies, enforces safety regulations governing the design, construction, operation, maintenance, inspection and management of our pipeline and storage facilities. These regulations require the development and implementation of pipeline integrity management programs, which include the inspection and testing of pipelines and the investigation of anomalies and if necessary, corrective action. These regulations also require that pipeline operation and maintenance personnel meet certain qualifications and that pipeline operators develop comprehensive spill response plans, including extensive spill response training for pipeline personnel.

We may incur significant costs and liabilities associated with repair, remediation, preventative or mitigation measures associated with our pipelines. These costs and liabilities might relate to repair, remediation, preventative or mitigating actions that may be determined to be necessary as a result of the testing program, as well as lost cash flows resulting from shutting down our pipelines during such repairs.

Our customer-driven employees continuously optimize working methods and introduce innovative changes with the objective to improve operations and service to our customers.

Additionally, if we fail to comply with PHMSA or comparable state regulations, we could be subject to penalties and fines. If future PHMSA regulations impose new regulatory requirements on our assets, the costs associated with compliance could have a material effect on our operations.

While we expect any legislative or regulatory changes to allow us time to comply with new requirements, costs associated with compliance may have a material effect on our operations.

While we operate and maintain our pipelines consistent with applicable regulatory and industry standards, we cannot predict the outcome of legislative or regulatory initiatives, which could have a material effect on our operations, particularly by extending more stringent and comprehensive safety regulations to pipelines and gathering lines not previously subject to such requirements.

Our natural gas processing plants and operations are subject to safety regulations under the Norway Occupational Safety Health Administration (“OSHA”) and comparable state and local requirements. A number of our natural gas processing facilities are also subject to OSHA’s process safety management regulations and the Environmental Protection Agency’s (“EPA”) risk management plan requirements.

Together these regulations are designed to prevent or minimize the probability and consequences of an accidental release of toxic, reactive, flammable or explosive chemicals. A number of our facilities are also regulated under the Norway Department of Homeland Security Chemical Facility Anti-Terrorism Standards (“Homeland Standards”), which are designed to regulate the security of high-risk chemical facilities. Our natural gas processing plants and operations are operated in a manner consistent with industry safe practices and standards.