More than 14,000 personnel have been certified through our environmental and safety training program.
Horizontal Directional Drill
Horizontal Directional Drilling (HDD) is a steerable, trenchless method of installing underground pipe in an arc along a prescribed bore path. The use of this method greatly minimizes surface disturbance and reduces environmental impact during construction. This construction method is used to install pipeline underneath waterways, wetlands, culturally sensitive areas, congested neighborhoods and roads.
Installation of a pipeline by HDD is generally accomplished in three stages. The first consists of directional drilling a small-diameter pilot hole along a designated directional path. The second involves enlarging this pilot hole to a diameter suitable for the installation of the pipeline. While the pilot hole is being drilled and enlarged to the appropriate diameter, skilled and trained pipeliners string, or lay out, the pipe to weld the pipe sections together. Once the hole is drilled to the appropriate size, the welded pipeline is installed by connecting to a swivel and pulling the pipe back through the enlarged hole.
Rover will use 49 Horizontal Directional Drills for the construction of the project.
Inadvertent Release of Drilling Mud
During the drilling activity, there is a potential for an inadvertent release of drilling mud mixture to the surface. If this occurs, you may note unusual seeping of the clay and water slurry on the surface of the ground or a discoloration of surface water in the nearby area.
As we continue our construction, you may also notice drones in the area we will employ as a surveillance tool. We are also requesting permission to access properties in proximity to the drills to assess by foot any evidence of the clay and water slurry on the surface or within any surface water.
The drilling mud used during the HDD process is made up of water and naturally occurring bentonite clay. Bentonite is a type of clay that is non-toxic and is naturally occurring in the environment. The clay mixture used on the Rover HDDs consists of a ratio that ranges between 3% and 10% bentonite and between 90% and 97% water.
Furthermore, bentonite is commonly used in a variety of household products that we use every day such as beer and wine, sugar, honey, creams and lotions, laundry detergents and hand soaps.
Environmental protections and minimizing and mitigating impacts to land properties are critically important to the Rover Pipeline. We are committed to restoring land to its previous form and reclaiming any impacts to environmental resources. As part of this plan, Rover worked diligently to complete tree felling by the March 31, 2017 date issued by the FERC in order to avoid any disturbance to the Indiana and northern long-eared bats that begin to roost in April.
As a company, it is Rover Pipeline’s expectation that our efforts minimize disruptions and leave no long- term footprint. As an operating principle, we work with individual landowners to make accommodations and to achieve full restoration of impacted land. Rover Pipeline will comply with the FERC Plan and Procedures and all regulatory requirements that govern, and typically dictate, the restoration techniques required for a regulated natural gas pipeline.
In general, the restoration will include, but will not be limited to, restoring the project area to preconstruction contours, allowing temporary workspaces to return to previous land use, and maintaining only minimal widths of right-of-way in a herbaceous state within forested wetlands. Agricultural areas will be restored according to the Agricultural Impact Mitigation Plan and landowner requirements, which means that all soils will be placed back into the ditch as they were taken out; the soils will be de-compacted and a native vegetative cover type will be applied to the disturbed portion of the right-of-way; and property-specific seed mixes can be applied if the seed mix is available. For forested habitat, Rover Pipeline will not plant trees, but will also not continue to cut or maintain the temporary work areas, which will facilitate forested habitat restoration. Therefore, there will not be a longer-term loss of forested habitat as compared to nonforested habitat.
Rover has enlisted the services of Land Stewards LLC, an experienced consultancy of agricultural engineers, drainage contractors, agronomists, and conservation planners, who will lend their expertise to discussions between landowners and Rover to develop plans to mitigate and restore any impacts to agriculture lands that may be traversed by the pipeline in Ohio and Michigan.