Environmental

Energy Usage

As an energy transportation company, Equitrans is committed to efficiently using energy and reducing our total energy use throughout our operational footprint. In doing so, we implement sustainable practices that are expected to reduce our emissions, protect the environment, and strengthen our economic performance. We are dedicated to reducing our Scope 1 emissions, as outlined by our emission reduction aspirations; and with our primary business being to deliver energy resources, our energy consumption and related Scope 2 emissions are relatively small in comparison to other industry sectors, such as manufacturing.

 

Managing Our Energy Usage

3-3
Management of material topics

302-1
11.1.2
Energy consumption within the organization

3-3
302-1

For our office facilities, we are committed to reducing our environmental impact as it relates to energy consumption across our owned and leased properties. Our LEED-certified senior operations and maintenance sustainability manager directs these efforts, as we proactively evaluate strategies and continuously seek opportunities to reduce energy consumption. To minimize energy usage, we use online applications to set optimal lighting levels and manage the motion sensor sensitivity of facility lights. We also utilize centralized temperature controls, computer monitor sleep modes, and an extensive preventive maintenance program to quickly address energy consumption issues. As the majority of our office-based employees work remotely, all office HVAC systems are used only when necessary, and lighting levels have been lowered in vacant areas to reduce electricity consumption. In 2022, Equitrans began utilizing an online tool to track and benchmark utility usage at several of our office sites, which will allow us to see usage trends and identify opportunities to decrease utility usage.

For this report, Equitrans expanded its energy disclosure to include fuel consumed in addition to purchased electricity, heating, and cooling.

At our field operations, many of our compressor stations along our pipelines generate their own electricity, utilizing the available natural gas at the site. By generating electricity directly from the available natural gas, rather than from diesel-powered generators that require separate fuel deliveries, we are able to more efficiently power our field operations. At other locations, electricity supply is available and purchased from the local electricity utility. Beyond purchased electricity consumption, the majority of the energy used at our operational sites is from fuel consumed in compressors, dehydrators, and other equipment. Fuel used for compressor engines has some degree of variability based on the system pressures, whereby the engines will slow down and use less fuel if there is a decrease in the amount of horsepower required to move the gas. While natural gas is the primary fuel used for our field operations, diesel fuel is used for some smaller equipment, such as water pumps, and gasoline is used to fuel fleet vehicles. 

Equitrans continues to investigate the opportunity to expand the amount of solar power utilized at our sites. In addition to the use of “solar flowers” at select locations, Equitrans has begun deploying solar panel skids capable of matching or even exceeding the wattage of solar flowers.

Evaluating Our Approach to Energy Management

Equitrans collects data on our office energy consumption to assess the benefits resulting from our energy management procedures. We analyze our energy data to identify areas where we may decrease consumption through innovative management techniques and technological improvements. Energy conservation is important to Equitrans, and we will continue to pursue advances in this area to ensure that we are doing our part to protect the environment.

In 2022, our senior operations and maintenance sustainability manager continued working to decrease energy use at office locations by changing settings to maintain a pleasant working environment for employees, while also ensuring that our facilities were running efficiently from an energy conservation standpoint. As an ongoing energy management practice, we continue to change lighting and HVAC schedules to save energy wherever feasible. The facilities team also uses new equipment to reduce energy usage when possible. For example, during 2022, 70 parking lot lights at our headquarters office were replaced with light emitting diode (LED) lighting and seven hot water tanks were replaced with new high efficiency tanks. Further, we decreased the amount of square footage used at our headquarters office, which will lead to a decreased electricity and heating load in the future.

Equitrans expanded its energy disclosure this year to include fuel consumed in addition to purchased electricity, heating, and cooling. Further, beginning with the 2023 CSR, the organizational boundary for greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and energy usage was changed from operational control to equity share. Beginning with this report, and similar to our financial reporting, Equitrans is accounting for GHG emissions and energy usage according to the equity share of its operations. The 2020-2021 energy consumption values shown below have been restated to reflect this change.

For 2022, year-over-year Companywide energy consumption decreased due to a decrease in fuel consumed. The decrease in fuel consumed was, in part, due to fuel-burning equipment being operated less hours in 2022 as compared to 2021. While the total energy consumption decreased, there was a small increase in purchased electricity and heating consumption for the year. Much of the purchased energy increase can be attributed to the late 2021 and 2022 conversion of three compressor stations from self-generated to purchased electricity. In addition, several measurement metering sites were brought online with purchased power in 2022.

Internal Energy Consumption (Gigajoules)1

2020

2021 2022
Non-Renewable Fuel Consumed 26,410,010 27,589,270 25,347,012
Renewable Fuel Consumed 0 0 0

Electricity, Heating, Cooling Purchased for Consumption

119,649

 143,021  145,840
 Self-Generated Electricity, Heating, Cooling Not Consumed

0

0 0

Electricity, Heating, Cooling Sold

0

0 0

Total Non-Renewable Energy Consumption

26,529,660

27,732,291 25,492,852

Total Renewable Energy Consumption2

0

10 178

1) Beginning with our 2023 CSR, the organizational boundary for GHG emissions and energy usage was changed from operational control to equity share. All energy values above include 100% of Equitrans Midstream usage and 60% of Eureka Midstream usage and exclude MVP and MVP Southgate projects.

2) Includes self-generated solar energy from solar flowers and solar panel skids

 

Finally, Equitrans purchased and retired 35,000 Green-e Energy certified renewable energy credits (RECs) for calendar year 2022 operations. These 35,000 RECs represent 35,000 megawatt hours (MWh) of renewable energy generated, which in this case was from wind energy. These RECs will cover all purchased electricity that is accounted for in the 2022 Scope 2 GHG emissions. Further details about the REC purchase and Scope 2 GHG emissions can be found in the GHG Emissions and Climate Change section of this report. 

Highlight Stories

Productivity Redesigned

As the world continues to adapt and evolve, companies are re-evaluating their management approach and taking into consideration the individual needs and circumstances of their employees to create work-life harmonization. With the implementation of person-centric leadership practices, Equitrans took the opportunity to redesign how we operate, improving performance and engagement and increasing our ability to compete for talent.

In early 2020, Equitrans began to recognize the benefits of a flexible workplace model. We initiated a deeper dive into the concept by soliciting survey feedback from office-based employees regarding their preferred ‘workplace persona’ preferences (anchor, flex, and remote). Today, we have fully embraced a ‘person-centric’ work environment, which takes into account the physical, cognitive, and emotional needs of employees and encourages them to find the best integration between their work and personal lives. With this approach, work is no longer about where an employee is located, but about the actual work an employee does. Importantly, employees are evaluated on work produced, without consideration to where or how they worked.

Rather than conforming to legacy practices or location constraints, Equitrans’ person-centric work model is defined by flexible work experiences, intentional collaboration, and empathy-based management. For our field-based employees, who are primarily required to work onsite, we rolled out flexible work guidelines to demonstrate our commitment to our person-centric work approach. Upon implementation of this new work model, roughly 44% of employees are working remotely, 25% split their time between working remotely and at an Equitrans location, 31% work from an Equitrans location full-time, and less than 1% work part-time.

We expect our person-centric model will continue to improve employees’ satisfaction and retention, as well as help to expand our talent pool. Since implementing our workplace personas, the number of employees working in other U.S. locations has increased, and we have been able to improve gender diversity. As part of our new work model, we periodically conduct employee surveys and focus groups to obtain feedback, using the results to adjust our workplace practices, as needed.

Office-Centric vs Person-Centric Work Design
Office-Centric Person-Centric

Provide consistent work experiences to deliver equality of experience

Provide flexible work experiences to deliver equality of opportunity

Enable serendipitous collaboration to deliver innovation by chance

Enable intentional collaboration to deliver innovation by design

Drive visibility-based management to deliver performance by inputs

Drive empathy-based management to deliver performance by outcome

Renewable Electricity and Scope 2 Emissions

With the publication of the Company’s Climate Policy in 2021, Equitrans established targets that include a 50% reduction in Scope 1 and 2 methane emissions by 2030 and a 50% reduction in Scope 1 and 2 total greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by 2040. Since this time, Equitrans has aggressively focused on reducing its direct Scope 1 emissions, which included the replacement of pneumatic devices and the installation of vent gas recovery units during 2022. These activities are expected to directly contribute to a reduction in methane emissions from operations. Additional information and details on the Company’s reduction efforts can be found in the GHG Emissions and Climate Change section of this report.

Equitrans is also working to reduce its indirect Scope 2 emissions, which are emissions related to purchased utilities, such as electric generation and heat. One method of aiding in the overall reduction of indirect Scope 2 emissions is through the purchase of certified renewable energy credits or RECs. Each REC is a certificate that corresponds to the environmental attributes of electricity that is generated from a zero-emissions renewable source and delivered to the electricity grid.

For the year-ended 2022, Equitrans purchased and retired 35,000 Green-e Energy certified RECs for its operations. These purchased RECs represent 35,000 megawatt hours (MWh) of generated renewable energy, which in this case was from wind energy generated in Oklahoma and delivered to the corresponding regional electric grid. By purchasing and retiring these RECs, Equitrans is taking credit for the renewable energy generated and ensuring that it is not accounted for elsewhere in the country. By purchasing these certified RECs, Equitrans was able to account for 100% of its purchased electricity through the supply of zero-carbon renewable energy, as related to its indirect Scope 2 GHG emissions.  

Employee Generosity — Giving Back To Our Communities

Equitrans Midstream is committed to making a difference in our communities, and the United Way is just one way we can join together to support those in need. For our 2022 campaign, we selected the United Way of Washington County as our primary United Way affiliate, which aligns with our Company headquarters’ location. Employees also had the opportunity to donate to the United Way of their choice by selecting from other United Way affiliates located in our primary operating states of Ohio, Pennsylvania, or West Virginia.

To jump start our 2022 United Way campaign, we held a basket raffle during our all-employee meeting and holiday celebration in Morgantown, WV. Employee teams donated 27 individual baskets, with raffle ticket sales raising more than $11,000 in donations. This was matched dollar-for-dollar by our Corporate Local Giving Program, jump-starting our 2022 campaign with a contribution of more than $22,000 to the United Way.

Through our official United Way campaign, which is conducted annually via individual, online donations, Equitrans employees pledged roughly $57,000 in individual contributions, which was matched dollar-for-dollar through the Equitrans Midstream Foundation for a total of approximately $114,000. Additional donations were made outside of our formal campaign, and, based on totals provided by the United Way of Washington County — Equitrans’ contributions totaled more than $169,000 in 2022 — making us the top contributor in their Chairman’s Award for Top 5 Workplace Giving Campaign Partners program.

Equitrans also received the agency’s Campaign Excellence Award, which is presented to a workplace giving campaign partner that puts forth extra effort in running their annual workplace giving campaign. In addition to our traditional campaign, this award was due in part to the hosting of our special to basket raffle event, which engaged all employees and included matching funds by the Equitrans Midstream Foundation and the Company’s Corporate Local Giving Program.

The United Way of Washington County’s mission is to unite people, resources, and organization to improve lives in Washington County. Through Equitrans’ support, the various programs at United Way will be funded to serve the most pressing needs in vulnerable populations within our local operating areas. Our donation is a powerful force for change, and we thank our employees for their generosity and support!

Proactive Project Outreach

Equitrans Midstream relies on proactive community engagement and feedback to foster a culture of trust, inclusivity, and transparency, and we view our projects and operations through a lens of responsibility and accountability. In keeping with this belief, environmental justice is an important component of our stakeholder outreach activities. Our Environmental Justice Policy lays the foundation of our commitment to provide for the fair treatment and meaningful involvement of all people in any public process involving our operations, regardless of race, color, national origin, or income. 

It is often said that actions speak louder than words, which was the case for the outreach team working on our Ohio Valley Connector Expansion (OVCX) project. As a critical component of the project’s pre-planning phase, our team contracted the services of an outside vendor that specialized in the identification of environmental justice communities located near the project. After consulting with the FERC, the EPA, and our contracted environmental justice specialists, Equitrans extended the OVCX project’s landowner contact radius an additional 0.5 mile to maximize the outreach efforts and ensure all stakeholders were personally aware of and involved with the project details.

In addition to our land team contacting property owners and community members within the expanded radius, the OVCX outreach team conducted multiple pop-up educational meetings and community open houses; solicited pre-paid comment and suggestion cards; distributed various informational mailings; and remained engaged with the community every step of the way by responding to questions and feedback. To better understand the needs and challenges faced by those living near the proposed project, we also met with local organizations and elected officials, as well as other key decision makers. These additional, proactive measures taken by our OVCX outreach team went above and beyond regulatory requirements to ensure consistent communication and transparency throughout the project’s lifecycle.  

Inspiring the World to Reuse

As we broaden our sustainability investments, we are especially proud of our partnership with Fill It Forward, an organization whose mission is “to inspire the world to reuse” by focusing on the elimination of single-use waste, such as plastic bottles and bags. In 2021, Equitrans partnered with Fill it Forward as a means of engaging and educating employees, while at the same time elevating our many ESG (environmental, social, and governance) initiatives.

In late 2021, we launched our Fill It Forward campaign with a custom holiday gift box for employees that included reusable tote bags and bottles with individual ‘scan tags’ that acted as a re-use tracker. When the tags were scanned, the data was automatically uploaded to Equitrans’ custom group on the Fill It Forward app and was used for tracking our collective impact, such as waste diverted, emissions saved, and how much ocean pollution was prevented.

Along with helping to eliminate waste, there was a charitable component to our Fill It Forward campaign. Each employee scan unlocked a $1 donation for every reuse, which contributed funds to our chosen charitable organization — DigDeep’s Appalachia Water Project. The funds collected were used to provide clean drinking water through the installation of meter-to-home water lines for families in southern West Virginia who currently have unsafe, limited, or no water at all. Our goal was to generate 10,000 scans and raise $10,000 for the Appalachia Water Project, and we were thrilled to have reached our goal roughly six months into the campaign. In addition, as part of Equitrans’ annual holiday giving initiatives, we made a separate donation of $20,000 to the Appalachia Water Project.

Thanks to the efforts of our employees — Equitrans was the proud recipient of Fill It Forward’s Changemaker Award for 2022. This unique ESG-focused campaign was a means of engaging and educating employees, while also elevating our sustainability efforts. Together with Fill It Forward, we believe that the simple act of reusing is the first step towards creating a sustainable mindset for all generations — and as an added benefit — being able to connect families with access to safe water will ensure the health and success of communities for years to come.

Equitrans Midstream’s Impact
 
19,968.42
lbs of emissions saved

 
617.58
lbs of waste diverted from landfill

 
11,734.02
kwH of power saved

 
123.52
lbs of ocean pollution prevented
20,586
total reuses

Source: Statistics calculated by Fill It Forward, as of year-end 2022

Our Bees Are All The Buzzzzz

At Equitrans, there is a clear tone that begins at the top — sustainability is critically important to the world we live in and is also essential to the future growth of our Company. In 2023, E-Train celebrated Earth Day with the kickoff of a two-year sustainability partnership with Alvéole. Alvéole focuses on bee-friendly communities for greener cities by installing honey bee hives at business locations across the world to foster environmental awareness and educate communities on the importance of creating sustainable bee populations. In fact, according to the U.S. Dept. of Agriculture, honey bees help to produce one-third of our food supply by pollinating $15 billion worth of crops in the U.S. each year, including more than 130 types of fruits, nuts, and vegetables. 

Through our new partnership with Alvéole, E-Train is hosting and supporting two honey bee hives at each of our Canonsburg, St. Clairsville, and Waynesburg offices. The hives were installed in late spring, and the bees have begun to collect nectar and pollinate thousands of flowers and plants. With the help of our assigned Alvéole beekeeper, the hives will become established, and the bees will re-emerge every spring to pollinate flora to grow food and produce E-Train’s own locally sourced honey.

Equitrans and Alvéole also established “MyHive” microsites for each of E-Train’s office locations. The MyHive sites are located on Equitrans’ intranet, and employees can access the sites at any time to find educational honey bee information and receive updates on our hives. As an added benefit, Alvéole beekeepers will conduct various on-site informational events for employees, such as beeswax candle making and honey extraction sessions. 

As we continue to safely and responsibly operate our network of natural gas pipelines, water lines, and compressor stations, it’s important to remember that the decisions we make today have a lasting and positive impact on future generations. On Earth Day and every day, we must hold ourselves to a higher standard by embracing our responsibility to operate in a manner that minimizes impacts on our natural resources and — above all else — we must keep safety our top priority, always.

Managing and Protecting Pipeline Integrity

Identification and management of landslide risk is a vital aspect of Equitrans’ daily work activities; however, the risk of a landslide is not limited to the midstream industry. Landslides can occur in any type of terrain, including both hills and valleys, and can be associated with any type of ongoing construction or pre-existing land disturbance. Natural factors such as rainfall and surface runoff water can amplify their frequency or severity; and left unmanaged, landslides have the potential to impact our environment. For Equitrans, this impact may include creating unnecessary strain on our underground pipelines, which are typically located in a variety of terrains as compared to our non-linear assets. To avoid unsafe situations and protect the integrity of our pipeline network, our engineering team uses a multi-faceted approach to aggressively identify and manage areas at risk for potential landslides. 

To identify potential land movement near our assets, Equitrans’ engineers utilize aerial patrols, drones with photogrammetry change detection, and routine on-site inspections — or, if required, a combination of these methods may be used. In each case, we monitor our pipeline rights-of-way looking for any indication of unstable soil, such as discoloration, downed trees, or other data that could indicate a change in topography. Following a thorough evaluation of each asset location or suspected slide area by our engineering and compliance teams, we assign a priority ranking to indicate the potential for further movement and any risk to the environment or to the integrity of the pipeline.

As a final step, Equitrans pairs the geographic location data of known and suspected landslides with National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) information. This analysis is done on a daily basis and allows Equitrans to identify rainfall events that could affect the stability of existing slide-prone areas and to rapidly respond and investigate when conditions change on the ground. In accordance with a defined framework that accounts for slide priority and rain severity, personnel may be deployed to conduct visual, on-site inspections. Beyond rainfall data, we also monitor temperature data to understand freeze thaw cycles and similarly deploy personnel to evaluate sites under changing conditions. Through continued use of these evaluation tools — aerial inspections, drone imaging, and manual site inspections — Equitrans remains committed to environmental and operational safety through its robust process to identify and manage potential landslides.

In addition, Equitrans launched a Light Detection and Ranging (LiDAR) pilot program in 2020 to aid in the enhanced detection of potential landslides along our pipeline rights-of-way. Today, we conduct semi-annual LiDAR flights across thousands of miles of pipeline. The adoption of LiDAR technology and utilization of our enhanced construction standards are collectively designed to improve Equitrans’ ability to mitigate landslide risk for the safety of our employees and communities, and for the benefit of our customers, investors, and the environment. 

Enhancing Methane Monitoring

In January 2023, Equitrans announced its status as a founding member of the newly formed Appalachian Methane Initiative (AMI), a coalition of regional natural gas operators committed to further enhancing methane monitoring throughout the Appalachia Basin and facilitating additional methane emissions reduction in the region. The AMI coalition was formed for the purpose of establishing and effectuating a methane monitoring, reporting, and mitigation network throughout the geographic area known as the Appalachian Basin.’

AMI’s efforts are intended to promote greater efficiency in the identification and remedy of potential fugitive methane emissions from operations in the Appalachian Basin through coordinated satellite and aerial surveys on a geographic-basis as opposed to an operator-specific basis and taking into account advanced methane monitoring and reporting frameworks. Additionally, the coalition will seek to coordinate and share best practices in mitigating methane emissions from natural gas operations, including production and midstream, and collaborate on activities and monitor results through transparent, publicly available reporting. 

For much of 2023, AMI is focusing on developing and implementing a pilot monitoring program to cover select areas of interest within the Basin’s major operating footprints, with the goal of working to develop and implement a full-Basin monitoring plan in 2024.

As part of AMI’s official launch, a news release was issued by the coalition’s founding members. We believe our membership in AMI will support our ongoing methane reduction efforts and complement our many ESG initiatives, and we look forward to working with other coalition members on advancing AMI’s initiatives.

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