At Equitrans, we believe that a successful safety culture underpins a successful business, and we demonstrate our commitment to safety every day. Our approach to safety involves communicating our expectations, providing the necessary tools and training for both our employees and contractors, and creating an engaging culture that supports our goal of zero workplace incidents to ensure everyone will return home safely at the end of their workday.
Safety — Above All Else
Embedding policy commitments
Management of material topics
Occupational health and safety management system
Hazard identification, risk assessment, and incident investigation
Occupational health services
Worker participation, consultation, and communication on occupational health and safety
Worker training on occupational health and safety
Promotion of worker health
Prevention and mitigation of occupational health and safety impacts directly linked by business relationships
Workers covered by an occupational health and safety management system
Work-related ill health
New suppliers that were screened using social criteria
Negative social impacts in the supply chain and actions taken
Discussion of management systems used to integrate a culture of safety and emergency preparedness throughout the value chain and throughout project lifecycles
Our approach to health and safety is simple — we are committed to the safety and well-being of our employees, contractors, and the communities we operate in. Safety is our top priority, and we strive to achieve zero workplace incidents by prioritizing health and safety in everything we do. From the way we design our facilities, to the way we educate and train our employees and contractors, health and safety is always our first and foremost objective.
Equitrans strives to conduct business operations in accordance with all applicable health and safety requirements, as established by the U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) and other regulatory bodies, as well as relevant industry best practices. Regulatory compliance is the first layer of our safety practices but is by no means our only safety focus.
In 2022, Equitrans employees completed 4,755 hours of safety education and training.
All Equitrans employees are held accountable for following safety procedures, and employees and contractors are encouraged to demonstrate proactive safety leadership. Employees are empowered to identify risks and hazards and provide resolution strategies to minimize the potential for incidents throughout our organization. All employees and vendors must adhere to our Health, Safety, and Environmental (HSE) Policy, which was initially published in 2019. With a deliberate focus on Equitrans’ stringent safety principle — in late 2022, we made the decision to update our current HSE Policy to include more robust language regarding our environmental principles. We expect to publish our enhanced HSE Policy in 2023. We also heavily invest in training for our employees regarding health and safety procedures, offering both online and in-person sessions to ensure all our employees have the opportunity to participate. It is essential for our employees to be well-informed on how to stay safe while working. Through our safety orientation and annual safety summit, Equitrans also maintains a robust contractor safety program, designed to ensure that everyone working on our behalf understands and follows our health and safety policies. Additionally, we require all affiliated Equitrans partners to implement stringent safety programs that meet our policy standards.
As part of our commitment, health and wellness are also essential focus areas for Equitrans. We are determined to help employees maintain a work-life balance, stay productive, and be proud of their work. By promoting wellness and mental health, employees remain healthy and engaged, which benefits the Company as a whole. More information can be found in the Workforce Culture section of this report.
Zero Is Possible
We manage safety and environmental stewardship at Equitrans through our Zero Is Possible (ZIP) Today platform, driven by our safety and environmental teams with oversight from the Board’s Health, Safety, Sustainability and Environmental (HSSE) Committee. ZIP Today is the manifestation of our overriding belief that success is only realized when every contributor is safe and unharmed, and when we consistently strive for environmental excellence.
Since 2018, our commitment to the ZIP Today platform has been transformed into a way of life at Equitrans. The three safety subcommittees within our safety team — representing operations, construction, and office employees — developed an enhanced “way-of-life mentality” that is exhibited throughout our operations. In line with our corporate safety objectives, each committee developed and tailored safety target assignments for implementation across their respective areas. The basis for the transformation was our Incident with Serious Potential (ISP) concept, a risk-based system focused on precursors of incidents, near-misses, and observations. Identifying precursors enables us to build safety practices that help prevent accidents from occurring. In accordance with ZIP Today, it is also important that our contractors share our enthusiasm, philosophy, and “way-of-life mentality” toward safety and environmental excellence. Equitrans offers contractor awards to individuals, crews, and companies demonstrating exceptional safety and environmental performance.
Hazard Identification and Incident Investigations
Equitrans requires employees to receive training on hazard and potential hazard identification in relation to their specific job requirements. Managers work with employees to keep safety as a top priority and to mitigate potential hazards.
When two or more field employees are working together, they are required to complete a comprehensive Tailgate Safety Meeting (TSM) prior to starting the task. During TSMs, the team discusses job requirements for the day and any potential hazards that may arise from crews or personnel working in proximity to each other. After the meeting, relevant employees and contractors are better able to identify potential hazards, discuss safety control measures, and mitigate any hazards found prior to starting work. If a hazard is found, employees and contractors must notify supervisors to discuss how to best resolve the hazard. Additionally, all employees and contractors have the responsibility to exercise their Stop Work Authority, an important protocol that reinforces the importance of keeping safety top-of-mind during all activities.
For every safety-related incident or observation that transpires, regardless of whether an injury occurred, we carry out a comprehensive incident investigation and use the results to learn and improve. Our investigation process starts with a root cause analysis to identify the precursors that may have led to the incident’s occurrence. Typically, a front-line supervisor leads the investigation, with assistance from the safety and/or environmental teams, as well as experts who are familiar with the event and its circumstances, including expert, third-party service providers, as needed.
We also evaluate and identify solutions to prevent a similar incident from occurring. This process may involve multiple departments within Equitrans, as the corrective actions identified may encompass multiple functions within the work processes. For incidents where an injury does occur, we record the nature of the incident, as prescribed by the OSHA Injury/Illness Recordkeeping Guidelines. This record serves as another source of information for our incident investigations. We actively communicate each incident or observation across Equitrans and, more importantly, share the identified corrective actions as a method of education. Safety bulletins, alerts, and training materials are often available to supplement this communication.
Safety Education and Training
Having informed, proactive employees is key to Equitrans’ safety culture. To achieve zero incidents, we depend on our employees to identify risks and take action to mitigate hazards, in addition to other health and safety protocols. We place a high value on safety training and education and are dedicated to providing our workers with the tools they require to do their jobs safely and effectively. Our approach is designed to empower workers to take control of their own safety, and we are committed to creating a safe and healthy work environment for everyone. In 2022, Equitrans employees completed 4,755 hours of safety education and training.
Upon joining the Company, every employee participates in Equitrans’ new hire orientation program, which includes information on our safety culture, and new workers receive an in-depth safety orientation upon arrival at their work location. Employees attend core safety training annually, as required, in addition to monthly training related to OSHA- and Equitrans-specific education tailored to employees’ work responsibilities. Examples of these tailored trainings include: how to recognize and control hazards, safe driving practices, hazard communication and safe work practices, and specialized training such as lockout/tagout (LOTO). Certain field-based employees are required to complete an Equitrans-specific Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA) Operator Qualification (OQ) training specific to their job responsibilities, in addition to extensive on-the-job training from their supervisors and peers. Additionally, the E-Train Home Office Safety Team (HOST) provides monthly safety tips to employees via postings on our Company intranet.
Equitrans also has specific safety education expectations for our contractors. Prior to starting work on any Equitrans site, all contractors and suppliers are required to review our contractor safety orientation video, which complements our overall safety practices, processes, and procedures and refreshes contractors on Equitrans’ many safety practices, including hazard identification, risk management, and the process for mitigating potential site hazards. Additionally, prior to beginning any work activities, contractors are required to attend a kick-off meeting that establishes our expectations, defines roles and responsibilities, and outlines the project’s emergency action plan and any potential hazards that may be present at the job site.
Our Proactive Approach to Employee Safety
Equitrans diligently tracks numerous safety-related metrics to evaluate our safety performance. We continue to utilize the Intelex app, our health, safety, and quality management software application used to track our safety data, which was launched in February 2021. Intelex is deployed to the phones and mobile devices of all our employees, providing an easily accessible and effortless method to record our Equitrans-specific, proactive metrics, including:
Incident with Serious Potential (ISP): Events or situations where a behavior or activity may have the potential to cause serious injury or significant property damage.
Observation with Serious Potential (OSP): Observations of behaviors, actions, or situations that, if continued, will potentially cause serious injury or significant property damage. We believe these observations are one of the most important observation types for our Company as they may lead to actions and corrections that help us to prevent potentially serious safety incidents.
Corrected Safety Opportunity (CSO): Non-serious hazard reports, deficient procedures or processes, or improvement suggestions that have been corrected and incorporated into our business and operations. The CSO metric encourages employees to report all safety observations and opportunities for improvement to help increase safety awareness across the Company.
As with previous years, proactive safety metrics continued to be incorporated into Equitrans’ Short-Term Incentive Plan (STIP), which aligns employee interests with those of our shareholders and the strategic objectives of our Company. By tracking and evaluating annual safety metrics and linking them to compensation, we can more effectively address any safety issues that may arise. The metrics enhance safety at our worksites and offices, help to identify opportunities for improvement, and enhance our overall safety culture.
The CSO metric encourages employees to report all safety observations and opportunities for improvement to help increase safety awareness across the Company.
In 2022, Equitrans made enhancements to the safety category of the STIP by introducing the Safety Proactivity Rate (SPR), which was designed to increase our focus on discovering potential safety hazards. The SPR increases when more observations, including OSPs, are submitted, and decreases when ISPs occur. To keep safety top of mind throughout the year, the SPR is reset quarterly. For our employees to receive the maximum payout, the SPR threshold for all four quarters of the calendar year must be achieved. By increasing our employees’ safety engagement, we are strengthening Equitrans’ safety culture and advancing best practices. Moreover, the increase in participation by both our field operations and office-based employees represents a fundamental shift in ownership — signifying that our team believes safety is everyone’s responsibility, not only that of the Company’s safety department.
Employee Safety Performance
As a result of our efforts to collect more robust safety data using the Intelex app, we received a total of 1,003 safety observations in 2022, which is an 18% increase compared to 2021. In addition, our focus on the SPR metric in 2022 contributed to a 73% increase in the number of departments using the Intelex app to report observations, resulting in greater opportunities for Equitrans to reduce risk and enhance the safety of our work environment. During the second quarter 2022, Equitrans achieved a Company record of 286 days without an ISP, which is likely the result of our employees’ diligence in reporting safety observations before an incident takes place.
Historically, the Company experiences a drop-off in safety observations during the fourth quarter, partly due to the holiday season. Resetting the SPR each quarter incentivized employees to break that trend, and observations remained consistent during the fourth quarter of 2022, as compared to the first three quarters of the year.
During 2022, employees submitted a total of 1,003 safety observations, an 18% increase year-over-year; and our new SPR metric contributed to a 73% increase in the number of departments using the Intelex app to report observations.
Equitrans also received two peer-to-peer observations in 2022, which showcased our workforce’s commitment to workplace safety. Peer-to-peer observations are one of the best avenues for influencing change and are top indicators for a world-class safety culture. Having our employees feel confident and comfortable in self-submitting peer-to-peer observations for safety improvements illustrates our culture of safety and trust.
In the past, safety observations were often considered to be only applicable to physical tasks in the field. In 2022, we had two OSPs reported from remote-working, office-based employees who observed actions that could lead to potential safety concerns for employees or contractors. These OPSs represented another meaningful step in giving all employees ownership of safety regardless of their typical work location. These OSPs further show that our workforce is proactive and is capable of recognizing potential hazards within our processes and systems.
In 2022, the focus on our proactive safety metrics also translated to an improvement for some of the backward-looking traditional safety metrics. Prior to the first days away, restricted or transferred (DART) injury case in 2022, our employees worked 1,798,882 hours without a single DART injury case reported. Equitrans experienced a DART rate reduction of 61% year-over-year, which is approximately four times better than the national average and 50% better than the industry average. In 2022, we began working to identify any potential emerging trends related to our total recordable incident rate (TRIR), which has shown an increase the past two years. The review indicated that, since 2019, the number of reportable incidents contributing to our TRIR has been generally consistent and has not deviated by more than one incident per year. It is important to note; however, there was a decrease in the number of serious injuries during this same time period, which indicates that our proactive approach to employee safety utilizing our ISP/OSP/CSO metrics is working as intended.
Total Recordable Incident Rate1
1.0 0.9 0.8 0.7 0.6 0.5 0.4 0.3 0.2 0.1 0
Lost Time Incident Rate1
1.0 0.9 0.8 0.7 0.6 0.5 0.4 0.3 0.2 0.1 0
1) Includes information for 100% of the Eureka Midstream assets; excludes MVP and MVP Southgate projects
Safety at Home
Equitrans’ office-based employees have transitioned to a predominantly ‘remote’ workforce, with many team members working either fully or partially from home. Hence, our home and office safety team (HOST) has broadened its focus to comprise office-related initiatives, as well as home-focused programs. To expand and diversify the group's membership and garner new ideas to improve home and office safety, HOST refreshed its membership for 2022 to include field office representatives and additional, new members. HOST's 2022 initiatives included:
Collaborating with the safety department to promote two virtual Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation / Automated External Defibrillator (CPR / AED) training sessions, which were open to all employees
Coordinating with the safety department to develop an emergency preparedness plan to address potential emergencies that may impact employees who work at our Canonsburg office
Communicating monthly safety memos via the Company’s intranet, including topics such as household hazardous waste, winter and summer safety, senior living safety, and travel safety
Offering employees the selection of a home-focused safety gift, such as auto emergency kits, smoke and carbon monoxide detectors, bike helmets, and life jackets, as a reminder that safety is a priority at work and at home
The safety and well-being of our contractors, both in the field and in the office, is very important to us. By focusing on our contractors’ safety, we help foster a safer and more efficient work environment while strengthening our partner relationships. We hold our contractors to the same standards as our employees to ensure our job sites and teams remain safe. Every company that provides contractors for our projects must share our steadfast commitment to safety. We expect all contractors, including their subcontractors and agents, to adhere to all applicable U.S. laws and regulatory requirements related to health, safety, and employment, as well as to Equitrans’ Safety Management System, Company policies, and best practices.
Before a contractor can begin work on any Equitrans project, they must first comply with all requirements of their Master Construction Services Agreement (MCSA) and be authorized by our supply chain team. The MCSA requires contractors to comply with all Company-specific health and safety standards, as well as any applicable site-specific safety plans, including any Company-published contractor safety protocols that may be provided. Our safety team uses the ISNetworld database to evaluate our contractors’ safety record to ensure results align with Equitrans’ safety standard. ISNetworld is an industry-recognized platform for the monitoring and evaluation of contractor safety performance and documentation. The ISNetworld database is used to evaluate all contractors in the following areas:
Safety Management Systems
Injury and Illness Statistics
Written Safety Programs and Safety Training
Experience Modification Rating
Additionally, we fully integrated ZIP Today into ISNetworld criteria by requiring contractors to maintain a proactive safety culture focused on ISP precursors. This addition of ISPs into our reporting system is aimed to increase contractor accountability and safety awareness, which aligns with our culture of safety — above all else.
To ensure our job sites and teams remain safe, Equitrans’ contractors are held to the same standards as our employees, and every company that provides contractors for our projects must share our steadfast commitment to safety.
Equitrans continually works with contractors and ISNetworld to enhance our contractor management processes and practices. One change made during 2022 was to modify the frequency of which contractors are required to verify their ‘work type’ as assigned in ISNetworld. A contractor’s work type is what defines the specific training, practices, and procedures a contractor must have in place in order to perform a specific job function. Contractors initially select their work type based on the scope of work they will be performing for Equitrans, which, in turn, forms the basis for the contractor’s required safety programs and training. By requiring contractors to review and verify their work type verification on an annual basis, we are able to confidently assign contractors to the work activities for which they are best qualified — making our work sites safer for everyone.
Our 'contractor safe work rules’ outline Equitrans’ contractor qualifications and management standards for health and safety. All affiliated Equitrans contractors must undergo an ISNetworld rating, which is continuously reviewed and updated throughout the year. Contractors with a rating greater than ‘C’ are permitted to work on Equitrans job sites and facilities. If a contractor has a rating of ‘C’ or below, the contractor has 60 days to improve their rating to an ‘A’ or ‘B’ or submit an Improvement Plan. The Improvement Plan should be based on the deficiencies identified in their ISNetworld rating. If a contractor does not improve their rating to an ‘A’ or ‘B’ or does not submit an Improvement Plan within 60 days, they are no longer permitted to work at any Equitrans job site or facility.
Contractors are also required to meet the operator qualifications required by the PHMSA and complete federal Operational Qualification (OQ) training, dependent upon the scope of work.
Evaluating Our Safety Performance
Equitrans enhanced both our employees’ and contractors’ safety culture with the introduction of the Intelex app. The implementation of the Intelex app resulted in significantly improved safety observations, which, in turn, resulted in a reduction in ISPs and an increase in general safety awareness. Our health and safety approach is just one way we demonstrate our Core Values and protect our most important asset — our people. It is critical that we continually evaluate our safety performance so we can identify what we do well, what we can improve on, and most importantly, where we are able to enhance our strategies to keep employees and contractors safe. Accordingly, we continuously strive for improvement by evaluating and reviewing our policies and standard operating procedures.
We periodically perform internal audits of our safety program and related procedures and, based on the identified safety risks, recommend corrective actions. Further, a separate third-party consultant conducts routine audits of topic-specific procedures and programs, such as the lock-out/tag-out (LOTO) and industrial hygiene programs. In addition, we empower our employees to provide feedback on issues regarding occupational health and safety and the development of management methods. Employees can make recommendations on safety policies and standard operating procedures based on their own work experiences.
For 2022, Equitrans reported a DART rate reduction of 61% year-over-year, which is approximately four times better than the national average and 50% better than the industry average.
If an incident or observation occurs, we conduct an investigation process to identify the root cause. Our policies and procedures are amended in accordance with our findings, and we provide accompanying educational training to our workforce. Employees also engage in safety audits and assessments where they provide insight based on their first-hand knowledge of our operations.
2022 Safety Summary
In 2022, Equitrans employees achieved fewer ISPs and a lower DART rate and LTIR compared to 2021. In addition, we received two peer-to-peer observations, two remote work OSPs, and an increase in the number of safety observations. We believe these submissions are the result of our commitment to continually enhance and elevate our safety culture through proactive efforts, such as our ZIP Today platform; Companywide use of the Intelex app for reporting ISPs, OSPs, and CSOs; the modification of the STIP program to include the SPR; and routine HSE memos for all employees that report our progress and keep safety top-of-mind.
Although our contractors have continued to embrace our proactive approach to safety, we have seen a slight increase in the overall contractor ISP rate. For 2022, this rise can be attributed to a few outlying contractors that were responsible for nearly 50% of the overall rate. As a result, contractor supervision changes were implemented and additional corrective actions were taken, including establishing supervisor responsibility and success criteria. These improved work practices were also incorporated into Equitrans’ contractor safe work rules.
Equitrans is proud that the health and safety measures we have implemented continue to result in positive impacts to our overall safety culture and performance.
Year-Over-Year Safety Metrics Summary1
Total Hours Worked
Work-Related Total Mileage
Preventable Vehicle Accidents (PVAs)
Total Recordable Incident Rate (OSHA Recordables Rate)2
Days Away, Restricted or Transferred (DART)
Incidents With Serious Potential for Injury (ISPs)
Recordable Work-Related Injuries
Work-Related Ill Health Fatalities
Recordable Cases of Work-Related Ill Health
Lost Time Incident Rate (LTIR)2
1) Includes information for 100% of the Eureka Midstream assets; excludes MVP and MVP Southgate projects
2) Rate-based metrics are calculated based on OSHA’s formula (metrics multiplied by 200,000 hours and divided by total employee hours worked during the year)
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.
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.
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.
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.
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
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.
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
lbs of emissions saved
lbs of waste diverted from landfill
kwH of power saved
lbs of ocean pollution prevented
20,586 total reuses
Source: Statistics calculated by Fill It Forward, as of year-end 2022
Employee Generosity — Giving Back To Our Communities
Equitrans Midstream is committed to making a difference in our communities, and theUnitedWayis just onewaywe can join together to support those in need. For our 2022 campaign, we selected theUnitedWayof Washington Countyas our primary United Way affiliate, which aligns with our Company headquarters’ location. Employees also had the opportunity to donate to theUnitedWayof their choice by selecting from otherUnitedWayaffiliates 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!