The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission approves applications to construct and operate natural gas pipelines. The FERC posts a list of natural gas pipelines it has approved, including the states in which the pipelines are intended to run. The FERC approves the location of natural gas pipelines through a public approval process that requires, among other things, that land owners located near the location of a pipeline get advance notice of construction and the opportunity to participate in the licensing process.
In addition to FERC licensing, the U.S.Energy Information Administration collects information about existing natural gas pipelines, including the location of pipeline systems, transmission pipelines, compressors, bugs and natural gas storage locations. Also available is information about importing and exporting natural gas to and from the United States as well as liquified natural gas facilities. The EIA only publishes information on its website that does not raise security concerns.
The National Pipeline Mapping System allows the public to view maps of oil and gas pipelines, but only in one county at a time and only using a map scale that is not large enough to identify the pipeline's exact location. Parties who need to dig in an area where a pipeline may be buried must apply to use the NPMS.