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USDOT Mode and Resource Description: Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration

Yellow pipeline across a desert landscape with a mountain backdrop

PHMSA's mission is to protect people and the environment by advancing the safe transportation of energy and other hazardous materials that are essential to our daily lives. To do this, the agency establishes national policy, sets and enforces standards, educates, and conducts research to prevent incidents. PHMSA also prepares the public and first responders to reduce consequences if an incident does occur.

Assistance for Local Emergency Response Training (ALERT)

The ALERT program promotes hazardous material response training for volunteer and remote emergency responders. Response activities include the transportation of crude oil, ethanol, and other flammable liquids by rail consistent with National Fire Protection Association standards. Funding is competitively awarded to non-profit organizations capable of delivering an established curriculum to emergency responders. 

This program typically funds training projects. The FY19 NOFO stated that applicants were not required to provide a funding match. Applicants were required to include a plan for training emergency responders in rural areas in their project application, per FY19 NOFO guidance. PHMSA is authorized through annual appropriations to use money recovered from prior year grant awards to fund the ALERT grant. PHMSA recovers funds from other grant awards biennially. ALERT grants will not be awarded in FY20.

Community Safety Grants

The Community Safety Grants program enhances community preparedness to respond to accidents and incidents involving hazardous materials, and supports the training of State and local enforcement personnel responsible for enforcing the safe transportation of hazardous materials. Funding is competitively awarded to non-profit organizations.

The FY19 NOFO stated that the possible award size ranged from $250,000 to $1 million per project. Additionally, it stated that applicants were not required to provide a funding match in FY19. Applicants were required to include a plan for training emergency responders in rural areas in their project application, per FY19 NOFO guidance.  

Competitive Academic Agreement Program (CAAP)

The CAAP program provides funding for academic research and provides tomorrow’s pipeline safety workforce with an early opportunity to contribute safety solutions. CAAP drives innovation by funding projects that can deliver cutting-edge research and/or technology for the safety of the Nation’s 2.8-million-mile pipeline transportation network. Applicants are required to provide at least a 20% funding match.

In its eight years since the program’s implementation, CAAP has funded more than $11.2 million dollars to student researchers at the university level. The cooperative agreements are competitively selected, and projects are prioritized based in part on their potential to deliver preliminary pipeline safety findings that can be further investigated through PHMSA’s core research program, commercialization potential, and student involvement. 

Hazardous Materials Emergency Preparedness Grants (HMEP)

The HMEP program was established in 1990 by the Hazardous Materials Transportation Uniform Safety Act. It is designed to allow grant recipients the flexibility to implement training and planning programs that address differing needs for each location based on demographics, emergency response capabilities, commodity flow studies, and hazard analysis. 

This program typically funds training and planning projects. The FY19 NOFO stated that applicants were required to provide a 20% funding match. Funds used for any other Federal grant or cooperative agreement cannot be used for HMEP matching purposes, per FY19 NOFO guidance. 

Hazardous Materials Instructor Training Grants (HMIT)

The HMIT program facilitates the training of hazmat instructors who then conduct training in Hazardous Materials Regulations (HMR) for hazmat employees. It is competitively awarded to non-profit organizations that satisfy both of the following eligibility requirements: 1) expertise in conducting hazmat employee training programs and 2) capable of reaching a target population of hazmat employees and including them in the training program.

The FY19 NOFO stated that the possible award size ranged from $250,000 to $1 million per project. Additionally, it stated that applicants were not required to provide a funding match in FY19. Applicants were required to include a plan for training hazmat employees in rural areas in their project application, per FY19 NOFO guidance.

One-Call Notification Systems Grants 

The One-Call Notification Systems Grants program provides funding to State agencies in promoting damage prevention, including changes with State underground damage prevention laws, related compliance activities, training, and public education. Funding through this program is reserved for States that have an existing certification or agreement with PHMSA to conduct pipeline safety inspections.

The FY19 NOFO stated that the maximum possible award amount was $60,000, and applicants were not required to provide a funding match. To qualify for funding under this program per FY19 NOFO guidance, a State could not provide any exemptions from the on-call notification system requirements to municipalities, State agencies, or contractors. 

State Damage Prevention Program Grants (SDPP)

The SDPP program aims to establish comprehensive State programs designed to prevent damage to underground pipelines in States that do not have such programs and to improve existing damage prevention programs.

The FY19 NOFO stated that the total funding for the program was $1.5 million and the maximum possible award amount was $100,000. Applicants were not required to provide a funding match, per FY19 NOFO guidance. 

Supplemental Public Sector Training Grants (SPST)

The SPST program facilitates the training of instructors who then conduct training in hazmat response for individuals with a statutory responsibility to respond to hazmat accidents and incidents. Funding is competitively awarded to national non-profit fire service organizations.

The FY19 NOFO stated that the possible award amount ranged from $467,000 to $938,000, and applicants were not required to provide a funding match. 

Technical Assistance Grants (TAG)

The TAG program provides funding to communities (cities, towns, villages, counties, parishes, townships, and similar governmental subdivisions, or consortiums of such subdivisions) and groups of individuals (not including for-profit entities) for technical assistance and analyses of local pipeline safety issues. Technical assistance is defined as engineering or other scientific analysis of pipeline safety issues. The funding can also be used to help promote public participation in official proceedings. However, the funding may not be used for lobbying, in direct support of litigation, or for activities associated with regulatory compliance or typical operations and maintenance of pipeline facilities. Local projects can range from public awareness activities to technology solutions, such as the conversion of paper maps into electronic format.

The FY19 NOFO stated that the total funding for the program was $1.5 million and the maximum possible award amount was $100,000. Applicants were not required to provide a funding match, per FY19 NOFO guidance.
 
Additional PHMSA Resources

For more support with PHMSA grant programs, refer to the following resources and links.PHMSA Field Offices

Field Offices | PHMSA offices offices are located in five regions across the country, headquartered in Washington, D.C. The Training Center is centrally-located in Oklahoma City. 

Grants Resources | PHMSA maintains a grants webpage to orient users to available grant funding opportunities:

Pipeline Technical Resources | PHMSA’s Office of Pipeline Safety provides technical information on selected pipeline safety topics to assist operators in pipeline safety regulation compliance. Pipeline grant applicants and/or recipients may also find these resources helpful in writing grant applications and implementing pipeline projects.


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Last updated: Friday, July 23, 2021