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Update: Section 71 of the Alberta’s Pipeline Rules now allows longer period of inactivity

New Pipeline Rules Updates (November 15,2023) – Section 71 Alberta’s Pipeline Rules (Pipeline Inactivity and Management)

In the dynamic realm of the oil and gas industry, where every moment counts, staying ahead of regulatory changes is paramount. Alberta's recent updates to Pipeline Rules (Rules), particularly in Section 71, have brought about a significant extension, doubling the window of inactivity from 12 to 24 months for pipelines. This article explores the implications of these updates, shedding light on the mandatory requirements for managing inactive pipelines and how Conformii with its records management capabilities and regulatory calendar can assist oil and gas companies to meet compliance deadlines.

Key Updates in Section 71 of the Rules (Inactive Pipeline Management):

  • Extended Time Threshold: A notable shift is observed in Section 71(1), which now stipulates that any pipeline that has not been in active flowing service for 24 months must undergo a specific course of action, including discontinuation, abandonment, or restoration to active flowing service.

  • Integrity Management Program Compliance: A licensee is now obligated, under Section 71(2), to manage pipelines not in active flowing service in accordance with their Integrity Management Program.

  • Regulator Oversight: Section 71(3) empowers the Regulator to request records or documents from a licensee, ensuring that any pipeline not in active flowing service is being effectively managed in alignment with it’s Integrity Management Program.

Benefits of a 24-Month Window of Inactivity:

The extension from a 12-month to a 24-month threshold for inactive pipelines presents several benefits for oil and gas companies:

  • Strategic Decision-Making: The increased timeframe allows companies more strategic decision-making regarding the future of inactive pipelines. This additional window provides an opportunity for careful evaluation, considering factors such as market conditions, operational requirements, and economic viability.

  • Cost Optimization: In some cases, bringing a pipeline back into active service involves significant costs. The 24-month window provides companies with a longer period to assess whether reactivation is economically viable or if discontinuation/abandonment is a more cost-effective solution.

  • Resource Allocation: With a more extended timeframe, companies can allocate resources more efficiently. This includes manpower, equipment, and financial resources, optimizing their use based on a comprehensive evaluation of the pipeline's status and potential future utilization.

  • Flexibility in Compliance Management: The extended period allows for a more flexible approach to compliance management. Companies can adapt their Integrity Management Programs and associated workflows to accommodate the specific circumstances of pipelines that have been inactive for up to 24 months.

Compliance Management with Conformii: In the face of these regulatory changes, Conformii offers a strategic solution for compliance management. The platform facilitates the seamless integration of Integrity Management Program requirements into operational workflows. Its user-friendly features ensure that records and documents demonstrating compliance can be easily uploaded and managed, providing a comprehensive view of pipeline management practices.

Navigating Regulatory Oversight: With the Regulator granted the authority to request records and documents, pipeline operators must adopt a transparent and accessible approach to compliance. Conformii's document control features empower licensees to efficiently organize and present the necessary records, demonstrating adherence to the Integrity Management Program.

Regulatory Calendar for Seamless Compliance: A standout feature of Conformii is its regulatory calendar, offering a proactive approach to compliance management. Users can create automatic calendar reminders linked to specific regulatory requirements, including those outlined in Section 71 of the Rules. This ensures that companies stay ahead of compliance deadlines, fostering a culture of continuous regulatory adherence.


As the oil and gas industry adapts to the evolving regulatory landscape, Section 71 of the Pipeline Rules emerges as a critical component in ensuring the ongoing integrity and safety of pipelines. The emphasis on managing inactive pipelines in accordance with Integrity Management Programs reflects a commitment to proactive risk management. Conformii, with its compliance management capabilities and the innovative regulatory calendar feature, stands as a strategic ally for pipeline operators. It offers a streamlined approach to navigating these regulatory changes, demonstrating a dedication to the highest standards of pipeline integrity. Compliance is not just a regulatory requirement; it's a commitment to the responsible and efficient operation of pipelines in the dynamic energy sector.

Join Us for a Comprehensive Webinar on the Recent Updates to Alberta's Pipeline Rules

Join us for the Navigating Compliance in the New Era of Alberta's Pipeline Rules webinar! This exciting online event will take place on Thursday, December 14, 2023 at 2:00pm MST.

In this event, we will delve into the latest updates and regulations surrounding pipeline compliance in Alberta. Our expert speaker, Erin Maczuga of Compliance Kiwi, will provide valuable insights and guidance on how to navigate these new rules successfully. Whether you are an industry professional, a stakeholder, or simply interested in the topic, this event is a must-attend.

During the event, you'll have the opportunity to engage in interactive discussions, ask questions, and network with like-minded individuals. Our goal is to equip you with the knowledge and tools necessary to ensure compliance in this ever-evolving landscape.

Don't miss out on this invaluable opportunity to stay informed and connected. Register now to secure your spot in this online event that will empower you to navigate compliance in the new era of Alberta's pipeline rules.

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