2022 APGA Operations Conference: Oct 11-13



The 2022 APGA Operations Conference will be held October 11-13 at the Hyatt Regency in Savannah, Georgia!

This event typically attracts over 250 natural gas distribution industry professionals from more than 70 public gas systems to learn about topics such as PHMSA's Natural Gas Distribution Infrastructure Safety and Modernization Grant Program, methane emission mitigation strategies, and new technology along with an exhibitor hall. 

*NEW!* APGA welcomes young professionals to the annual APGA Operations Conference to develop their knowledge, advance their careers, and get to know their peers. To take advantage of a $100 discount off registration for professionals age 30 or younger, please contact APGA at info@apga.org


The Operations Conference will be preceded by the APGA Fall Board & Committee Meetings held October 9-11 in Savanahh, Ga., for our members serving on APGA's board, committees, and task groups.
 
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Attendee Registration & Pricing

The registration fee includes registration for one person to attend all conference sessions, breaks, continental breakfasts, lunch and receptions.

APGA Member Attendees:
$525
Non-APGA Member Attendees: $725

To take advantage of a $100 discount off registration for professionals age 30 or younger, please contact APGA at info@apga.org



Conference Location

The 2022 APGA Fall Board and Committee Meetings and Operations Conference will take place October 11-13 at Hyatt Regency Savannah in Savannah, Ga. The APGA room block is full. Attendees can book a room directly with the Savannah Hyatt. If you are unable to book a room at the Hyatt, the overflow options in our area are as follows:

Agenda & Session Schedule

    2022 Operations Conference Agenda is Now Available!


    The 2022 APGA Operations Conference had speakers and panels of experts on topics such as pipeline safety regulations, PHMSA's Natural Gas Distribution Infrastructure Safety and Modernization Grant Program, methane emission mitigation strategies, case studies from community-owned utilities, and will also include an exhibitor hall of the latest in products and services for natural gas distribution operations.

    The 2022 APGA Operations Conference provides professional development hours (PDH) for the entire conference.  PDHs are required by many states to maintain professional engineering licensure. 
     

     



    Featured 2022 APGA Operations Conference Speakers

    PHMSA Perspective: Implementing Congressional Mandates & Pipeline Safety Priorities For 2022 And Beyond by Tristan Brown, Deputy Administrator, Pipeline & Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA) Hear how the Department of Transportation Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA) is addressing the mandates within the Congressional PIPES Act of 2020 and the PHMSA Pipeline Safety & Modernization Grant Program. Better understand how these directives are driving their regulatory agenda. Deputy Administrator Brown will discuss how the change of administration has impacted both current rulemakings and expectations for pipeline safety efforts in the future.

    2022 APGA SOAR Gold Winner: Member Best Practice by Alex Taylor, Jackson Energy Authority, TN Hear from the APGA 2022 System Operational Achievement Recognition Program Gold Winner, Jackson Energy Authority. SOAR honors natural gas distribution utilities that demonstrate commitment to system integrity, system improvement, workforce development and employee safety. JEA will share how SOAR has impacted their system and the programs it has encouraged them to implement.

    PHMSA Pipeline Safety & Modernization Grant Program – Next Steps by Shakira Mack, Pipeline & Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA) Shakira Mack, PHMSA’s Director of the Natural Gas Distribution Infrastructure and Safety Modernization Grant Program, will discuss next steps for provisionally selected grant award winners. She will provide details and insight into the environmental review process, and post-award requirements, such as: single audits, performance period extensions, indirect costs, and accounting procedures for billing.

    Three Great Tracks

    To help you tailor the APGA Operations Conference to your needs, we have three concurrent topic tracks on Operations & Engineering, Environmental, and Safety & Compliance offering ten breakout sessions each. Attendees can pick and choose relevant sessions to ensure you’re getting the most out of your event experience. Here are some highlighted sessions:

    OPERATIONS & ENGINEERING

    • GIS Role In Supporting PHMSA Grant Requests And Utility Modernization by Tom Coolidge, ESRI Advances in recent years better enable GIS to support gas utilities in seizing new funding opportunities and responding to asset and workflow modernization challenges and opportunities.
    • Lost And Unaccounted For Gas: Causes And Remedies by Bradley Bean, B3PE LLC A discussion of the various causes of Lost and Unaccounted For (LAUF) Gas and actions that can help reduce LAUF. Topics will include measurement and accounting issues, improper adjustment and handling of measured values, operation and maintenance practices, gas venting, gas lost to damage and leakage, and reporting errors. Suggestions for reducing the LAUF associated with each of these topics will be discussed.

    SAFETY & COMPLIANCE

    • PSMS – One Operator’s Journey by Jen Sherwood, Middle Tennessee Natural Gas Utility District Hear from a peer member system about their Pipeline Safety Management Systems (PSMS) journey. Jen will discuss how they’ve incorporated critical elements of PSMS as found in API RP 1173 into their operations. She’ll share how those changes have impacted their system and their staff.
    • Panel Discussion: How Do Utility Managers Influence Safety Culture? with John Gann of MEA Energy Association (moderator), Glen Boatwright of York County Natural Gas Authority, SC, Carl Smith of Greenville Utilities Commission, NC, and Todd Hardigree, City of Lawrenceville, GA Recent industry research on safety culture found that “top management's actions have the strongest positive influence on safety culture at the work group level by emphasizing compliance and public safety, and by encouraging good safety behavior by allocating resources to ensure it.” Hear from three APGA member system leaders on how they strive to have a strong positive influence on safety culture.

    ENVIRONMENTAL

    • How To Remove Barriers And Reporting Challenges During Pipeline Evacuation In The Field by Heather Smercina, Onboard Dynamics In this presentation, Heather will present solutions on how to address the challenges for pipeline operators in keeping our natural gas pipeline infrastructure well maintained while mitigating methane emissions. This presentation will show how field pipeline operators can efficiently evacuate natural gas from pipelines with a much lower carbon footprint that helps to reduce the environmental impact and makes the process safe, efficient, and more reliable. She will also share new advanced methods for accurately monitoring and reporting on the captured and recovered methane that will help companies stay in compliance with future, aggressive regulations.
    • Mitigating Methane Emissions At Regulator Stations by Jon Beam, Equipment Controls Co. Discuss various techniques and technologies to help address methane emissions and regulator stations.

    Schedule At A Glance

    Download a PDF of the program with breakout session descriptions.

     Tuesday, October 11 - Opening Session

    1:00 PM Opening Remarks
    John Lunde, Watertown Municipal Utilities, SD and APGA Operations & Safety Committee Chair

    1:15 PM Welcome To Savannah
    Arthur Corbin, Municipal Gas Authority of Georgia

    1:30 PM APGA Welcome, Association Update
    Dave Schryver, President and CEO, American Public Gas Association
    From advocating for public gas systems to Congress to providing resources to help members succeed, APGA has been hard at work. Hear some of the recent initiatives undertaken by the association and how your system can get involved. Dave will also share some of the early insights from the recent strategic planning session undertaken by the APGA Board of Directors.


    2:00 PM PHMSA Perspective: Implementing Congressional Mandates & Pipeline Safety In 2022 And Beyond
    Tristan Brown, Deputy Administrator, Pipeline & Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA)
    Hear how the Department of Transportation Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA) is addressing the mandates within the Congressional PIPES Act of 2020 and the PHMSA Pipeline Safety & Modernization Grant Program. Better understand how these directives are driving their regulatory agenda. Deputy Administrator Brown will discuss how the change of administration has impacted both current rulemakings and expectations for pipeline safety efforts in the future.

    2:45 PM Networking Break & Vendor Exhibits

    3:15 PM Panel: Natural Gas Workforce In A Low Carbon Future
    Panelists will discuss the opportunities for the natural gas utility workforce in a low carbon future. Deloitte will share some of their preliminary findings from a recent study and APGA members will provide insight into how they are best positioning their workforce to be successful in 2023 and beyond. Panelists include:
    • Stuart Saulters, American Public Gas Association
    • Carolyn Amon, Deloitte
    • Rodney Dill, Municipal Gas Authority of Georgia
    • Stephen Mayfield, City of Tallahassee Natural Gas, FL

    4:00 PM Culture Is Everything
    James Cross & Kelsey Klingler, Energy Worldnet
    Culture. Culture. Culture. It is one of the buzziest of buzzwords. With organizations thrust into a remote, or at the very least, hybrid workplace, everyone is trying to crack the code of “culture.” A strong organizational culture serves as a foundation for an even stronger safety culture. Join this casual discussion about the opportunities and challenges facing all of us as we build our companies’ safety cultures.

    4:45 PM Adjournment

    5:30 PM Networking Reception Sponsored by Ingevity


     Wednesday, October 12

    Operations
    & Engineering

    8 AM

    Construction Contractor Perspectives

    8:50 AM

    Field Evaluations Of The Supraflow Live Large Diameter PE Tapping Tee

    9:35 AM

    Networking Break With Exhibitors

    10:05 AM

    GIS Role In Supporting PHMSA Grant Requests And Utility Modernization

    10:40 AM

    Reliable Station Design

    11:15 AM

    Member Case Study: Live Camera Insertion

    11:45 AM

    Lunch

    1:00 PM

    Remote Pressure Monitoring


    1:50 PM

    Lost And Unaccounted For Gas: Causes And Remedies

    2:35 PM

    Networking Break With Exhibitors

    3:05 PM

    Valve Maintenance


    3:40 PM

    Cured-In-Place Liners: Evolving With The Times


    4:15 PM

    Roundtable Discussion: Supply Chain Challenges

    5:15 PM

    Networking Reception

     

    Compliance
    & Safety

    8 AM

    Panel Discussion: How Do Utility Managers Influence Safety Culture?

    8:50 AM

    PHMSA Grant Program: What We’ve Learned
     

    9:35 AM

    Networking Break With Exhibitors

    10:05 AM

    Operator Qualification Effectiveness Measurement

    10:40 AM

    Valve & Rupture Detection Rule

    11:15 AM

    Contractor Oversight In Your Damage Prevention

    11:45 AM

    Lunch

    1:00 PM

    Leveraging Assessments To Drive Compliance

    1:50 PM

    PSMS – One Operator’s Journey

    2:35 PM

    Networking Break With Exhibitors

    3:05 PM

    Regulatory Trends In Cathodic Protection


    3:40 PM

    SHRIMP 4.0: Where We Are & Where We Are Going


    4:15 PM

    How To Address Cyber Security Risks For Your Gas System

    5:15 PM

    Networking Reception

     

    Environmental

    8 AM

    Provider Panel: Advanced Mobile Leak Detection

    8:50 AM

    How To Remove Barriers and Reporting Challenges During Pipeline Evacuation In The Field

    9:35 AM

    Networking Break With Exhibitors

    10:05 AM

    Mitigating Methane Emissions At Regulator Stations

    10:40 AM

    Certified Natural Gas

    11:15 AM

    Incorporating Cross Compression Into Municipal Gas Maintenance And Construction

    11:45 AM

    Lunch

    1:00 PM

    Hydrogen & Renewable Natural Gas Injection Solutions

    1:50 PM

    Natural Gas Venting And Flaring Alternative

    2:35 PM

    Networking Break With Exhibitors

    3:05 PM

    An Overview Of Zero Emissions

    3:40 PM

    Advanced Leak Detection Journey, Introducing Today’s Technology Into Nautral Gas System Surveys

    4:15 PM

    Young Professionals: Roundtable Discussion

    5:15 PM

    Networking Reception

     

     Thursday, October 13

    7:00 AM Coffee & Vendor Exhibits

    8:00 AM PHMSA Pipeline Safety & Modernization Grant Program – Next Steps
    Shakira Mack, Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA)
    Shakira Mack, PHMSA’s Director of the Natural Gas Distribution Infrastructure and Safety Modernization Grant Program will discuss next steps for provisionally selected grant award winners. She will provide details and insight into the environmental review process, and post-award requirements, such as: single audits, performance period extensions, indirect costs, and accounting procedures for billing.

    8:45 AM 2022 SOAR Gold Winners: Member Best Practices Panel

    Alex Taylor, Jared Smith & Robert Mullins, Jackson Energy Authority, TN
    Hear from the APGA 2022 System Operational Achievement Recognition Program Gold Winner, Jackson Energy Authority. SOAR honors natural gas distribution utilities that demonstrate commitment to system integrity, system improvement, workforce development and employee safety. JEA will share how SOAR has impacted their system and the programs it has encouraged them to implement.

    9:30 AM APGA Safety Management Excellence Award Winner

    Lucio Garcia, City of Las Cruces Utilities, NM
    The APGA Safety Management Excellence Award is given to an APGA member system that demonstrates a commitment to continuous improvement and excellence in Safety Management through impactful employee safety programs. As the 2022 winner, the City of Las Cruces will share some of their individualized, hands-on approaches to employee safety.


    10:15 AM Networking Break

    10:30 AM APGA Excellence In Environmental Stewardship Award Winner
    Brooke Sinclair, Knoxville Utilities Board, TN
    The APGA Excellence in Environmental Sustainability Award recognizes an APGA member system that demonstrates excellence in their commitment to environmental stewardship. Knoxville Utilities Board is the 2022 winner. Hear some of the things they are doing within their system and community to be stewards of the environment.


    11:00 AM Roundtable: Reflection
    Moderator: Steve Squibb, APGA Operations & Safety Vice Chair
    This interactive roundtable is an opportunity to share your challenges related to the design, construction, operation and maintenance of natural gas distribution systems.

    11:30 AM Conference Wrap-Up & Adjournment


    2021 Operations Conference Presentations

    APGA has posted the presentation materials from the 2021 Operations Conference in the community library. The presentations are available only to registered 2021 Operation Conference attendees and exhibitors.

    View Presentations


    Questions?

    If you have any questions on registering for the event, please contact us!

    Contact APGA