Natural gas and crude oil are commonly found in the same areas and transported through vast pipeline networks throughout the United States. More than 95 percent of natural gas used in the U.S. moves from its source to the end user by pipeline. And almost 70 percent of petroleum transport is by pipeline. The petroleum pipeline network for all of Europe is only a tenth of the size of that in the U.S.
Natural gas is collected in gathering lines and conveyed to processing plants where impurities are removed. About 160 natural gas pipeline companies in the United States operate more than 300,000 miles of pipeline. This includes some 180,000 miles of interstate pipelines carrying natural gas from producing regions to consuming regions. (See www.naturalgas.org). Roughly 1,200 natural gas distribution companies own more than 1.2 million miles of distribution pipe that deliver natural gas to homes and businesses.
In a similar vein, the United States also has 30,000 to 40,000 miles of pipelines that gather crude oil in the primary oil productions areas – Texas, Oklahoma, Louisiana and Wyoming. The oil is collected from onshore and offshore wells and transported from the gathering lines to a trunk line system that includes approximately 55,000 miles of piping connected with processing facilities in regional markets.
AMERICAN electric-resistance welded steel pipe, available in sizes ranging from 10 3/4 inches to 24 inches in diameter, has a long record in the oil and gas industries. AMERICAN was the first manufacturer to offer steel pipe in 100-foot lengths, the first to use dual-probe ultrasonic testing procedures and the first domestic ERW mill to supply HIC (hydrogen-induced cracking) resistant steel.