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Pipelines: Natural Gas

Volume 463: debated on Tuesday 17 July 2007

To ask the Secretary of State for Wales what discussions he has had with the Welsh Assembly Government on health and safety and the new Welsh gas pipeline. (149217)

My hon. Friend the Member for Carmarthen, West and South Pembrokeshire (Nick Ainger), and I had regular discussions with Welsh Assembly Government ministerial colleagues, including about the health and safety considerations of both phases of the liquid natural gas pipeline (LNG), and I will continue to do so as necessary.

I am confident that stringent conditions are attached to the approval. All pipelines in the United Kingdom are designed, tested and operated in accordance with the strictest standards established by the Health and Safety Executive and the Institute of Gas Engineers.

Both the National Grid (NG) and the Milford Haven Port Authority have been working closely with Government and security services to make sure they have robust security arrangements.

The NG takes safety and security of people and assets extremely seriously and continually carries out thorough reviews of safety and security at its sites around the country based on potential risks, and has a number of procedures in place. In 35 years the UK’s high-pressure National Grid Transmission System has never experienced a serious incident affecting life or property, and I am sure that NG is doing its utmost to maintain this exemplary record.