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Collaborative Partnerships

IGEM works with other industry bodies to raise awareness on certain issues in the gas industry.

  • Gas in Flats

    IGE/G/5

    In 2006, IGE/G/5 was published to address several complex technical and legal issues that arise with the inclusion of gas pipes, meters, pipework and appliances in buildings that contain multiple individual dwellings. The links below provide information on the requirements and their amendments. This guidance is relevant for flueless appliances, notably cookers.

    IGEM Commenatry on IGE/G/5
    Updated information and amendments on the IGEM Standard covering Gas in Flats and other mulit-dwelling buildings.

    Gas Safe Register Technical Bulletin 015
    Guidance from Gas Safe Register on the requirements of IGE/G/5.

  • Gas Industry Standards

    IGEM Standards normally prescribe best practices for various work activities for the Gas industry.

    The Gas Industry Standards (sometimes refered to as GIS's) are product standards for all Gas Distribution Networks (GDN's) - National Grid, Scotia Gas Networks, Northern Gas Networks and Wales & West Utilities.

    As part of the gas network sales process the Industry agreed to collaborate and develop a suite of Industry product standards which are now approved and published on this website.

    The common objective of the GDN's is to introduce product standards that are consistent across the industry and that place the responsibility of evidence of conformance from purchaser to supplier. This will prevent divergence of standards thereby avoiding added cost and complexity in manufacturing and confusion in the market place.

    All published GIS which are applicable to products that are fixed assets associated with the gas distribution system, gas carrying or safety related when working on or within close proximity to the gas supply system require Kitemarking.

    For other published GIS Kitemarking is desirable but not essential.

    The Gas Industry Standards are available from the ENA website to those organisations specifically engaged in seeking product approval.

  • Gas Safety

    Gas Safe Register maintain the list of Gas engineers who are legally able to carry out gas work in the home or workplace.

    The name Gas Safe Register was introduced on the 1st April in 2009 and took over from CORGI who previously maintained the Register.

    Registered Gas engineers can obtain technical information from the registered area of the Gas Safe Register website.

    Consumers can search registered engineers in your area as well as other gas safety information.

    IGEM publish a number of Standards which engineers are expected to work to when carrying out gas work in the home and workplace.

  • Hazardous Area Classification

    IGE/SR/25 Edition 1, published in 2000 was the normal area classification Standard used by the Natural Gas industry for zoning to meet BS EN 60079-10.

    The Dangerous Substances and Explosive Atmospheres Regulations (DSEAR), 2002,  are the UK implementation of the European ATEX user Directive. They place duties on employers to protect workers from explosive atmospheres, including: risk assessments; preventing the formation of explosive atmospheres, avoiding ignition sources, area classification and mitigating the harmful effects of an explosion.

    Work carried out at the Health and Safety Laboratory (HSL) capitalised on the concept within BS EN 60079-10-1 that small gas releases (even continuous releases) can give rise to zones of "negligible extent" which do not result in a need for any special precautions for electrical equipment in the same area. This concept did not exist in IGE/SR/25 - any potential release gave rise to at least a zone 2 area, even around low pressure pipework in the open air. The abstract and the full report (RR630) are avaible from the HSE website

    In 2008, an IGEM called together the relevant industry bodies to carry out a revision of IGE/SR/25 Edition 1, a key aim was to incorporate the output of the HSL work. The result was the publication of IGEM/SR/25 Edition 2, a less onerous Standard for the majority of gas installations.

  • HSE

    Health & Safety Executive (HSE) has updated ACoP L56 (Safety in the installation and use of gas systems and appliances) following a process of consultation. This ACoP provides guidance on the Gas Safety (Installation and Use) Regulations.

    It is aimed at anyone who has a duty under these regulations, which includes those who install, service, maintain or repair gas appliances and other gas fittings, as well as landlords.

    A key change is inclusion of the guidance from ACoP 20 (Standards of training in safe gas installation) which is due to be withdrawn. To view other changes or to purchase Edition 4 of ACoP L56, click here.

    When ACoP 20 is withdrawn in early 2014, a replacement document called 'Standards of training in gas work' will be published by IGEM. This document is being developed by IGEM and Energy & Utility Skills (EU Skills) in consultation with industry.

    IGEM will provide further updates on the withdrawal of ACoP 20 and publication of successor document 'Standards of training in gas work' via email, the website and Gi (Gas International) journal.

    If you require clarification on any of these developments, please feel free to email Technical@igem.org.uk or telephone IGEM Technical Officer Peter Hurst on 01509 678158.

  • Notices

    New arrangements for the role of the Meter Asset Manager's MAMCoP Board.

    Following Ofgem's consultation in October 2011, and their decision set out in document ref: 42/12 "Transfer of 'Meter Asset Manager' approval role: Statutory consultation on modifications to the gas supply licence and gas transporters licence", arrangements have been put in place for the Meter Asset Manager's MAMCoP Board to be moved from directly being supervised by Ofgem to be incorporated into SPAA, the Supply Point Administration Arrangements is a multi-party agreement to which all domestic gas suppliers and all gas transporters are required by their Licences to accede.

    From 28th August 2012 the MAMCoP Board (as an expert group) will sit as a sub-committee of SPAA.

    The Terms of reference for the group along with a change request and appeals process is being prepared and will all be subject to debate at the first MAMCoP Board meeting under the new arrangements on the 3rd October 2012.

    The current version of MAMCoP v1 (2005) remains in place and the auditing process will remain with Lloyds Register through into 2013.

    All the details of these changes can be found on the websites of Ofgem, SPAA and Lloyds Register.

  • Ofgem

    Ofgem is the Office of the Gas and Electricity Markets who aim to protect consumers. IGEM and Ofgem have worked together with Industry on several projects including; producing an Industry Standard to define the limits of the Network and Guidance on Work on Meter Installations.

    IGEM/G/1 - Defining the end of the Network

    This freely available Industry Standard gives definitions for the Natural Gas Industry. IGEM/G/1 shows who has responsibilities for the different parts of the Industry.

    Industry Guidance on Meter Installations

    When carrying out work involving a primary gas meter used to register the quantity of gas supplied to a consumer, there are legal requirements that must be complied with; there are national and industry Standards that shall be complied with; and there are established, recognised operational and management procedures that need to be adopted.

    IGEM facilitated the publication of the Guidance, and it has subsquently been issued as a technical bulletin by Gas Safe Register on behalf of the Ofgem MAMCOP Board. The guidance takes into account the above requirements and shows them in a simple, easy to follow format.

    Guidance on Work on Meter Installations

    For information, the work on the Guidance was initiated by Ofgem's MAMCoP Management Board but the work itself was carried out by representatives of:

    National Grid Metering
    Gas Forum
    Association of Meter Operators
    SBGI
    Connaught
    Association of Independent Gas Transporters
    Gas Safe Register
    OfgemNoble Denton
    Distribution Network Operators
    HSE
    IGEM

  • Public Inquiries

    The UK gas industry's past safety record indicates that properly installed, tested and maintained equipment does not pose significant explosion risks.

    One incident which lead to a Public Inquiry being set up under the Inquiries Act 2005 was the ICL Inquiry. The aim of this inquiry was to mainly to investigate the events which lead up to the incident at Grovepark Mills, Maryhil, Glagsow on 11th May 2004.

    The report from the inquiry is now available on the website detailed below.

    ICL Inquiry Website
    Information on the ICL Inquiry.

    IGEM's closing submission
    IGEM's response to the ICL Inquiry.

  • Radon

    IGEM in association with the National Radiological Protection Board (NRPB) has produced this information to answer some of the questions which you may have on the issue.

    Introduction

    Radon is a colourless, odourless gas with radioactive properties. In the UK many people are aware that radon is present in their homes. This radon arises naturally from the soil and rock in the ground. The National Radiological Protection Board (NRPB) is advisor to the government on radiation protection and provides a service for householders to assess the level of radiation present in their homes.

    Very low levels of radon are also present in natural gas. The radon enters the gas from the rock formations which surround the gas reservoir.

    The NRPB has carried out an assessment of the health impacts from radon in UK natural gas and confirmed that they present a negligible risk to health.

    The Institution of Gas Engineers and Managers in association with the NRPB has produced this information to answer some of the questions which you may have on the issue.


    Sources of Radioactivity

    Wherever we are, whatever we do, we are surrounded by radiation, which comes from many different sources, some natural, some artificial.

    The amount of radiation which a person receives is called the dose. The average annual dose to the UK population is 2,600 units from all sources.

    Anyone who receives additional exposure to a particular source of radiation will increase their annual dose. For example, shellfish accumulate radioactive materials that are naturally present in water, so that people who regularly consume large quantities of mussles, cockles or winkles can receive a total dose of radiation which is one fifth more than the average UK resident.

    In the same way, some jobs involve additional exposure to natural sources of radiation. For example, airline pilots are exposed to higher than average levels of radiation from cosmic rays.


    Units

    One dose unit is called a microsievert.

    A microsievert is one millionth of a sievert.

    A sievert is an international unit which is used to express the effective dose of radiation received.


    Average Person in the UK

    Annual dose 2,600 units from all sources.


    Natural Sources

    • 50% radon gas from the ground
    • 14% gamma rays from the ground & buildings
    • 11.5 food and drink
    • 10% cosmic rays


    Artificial Sources

    • 14% Medical
    • <0.1 nuclear discharges
    • <0.1 consumer products
    • <0.2 fallout
    • <0.3 occupational


    What is Radon?

    Radon is a colourless gas with no smell. It originates from the decay of minute quantities of naturally occuring uranium in the rocks beneath us. The radon moves up through the soil or along cracks in the rock until it reaches the surface. Once there, it disperses into the atmosphere and becomes another part of our background radiation.


    Where does radon in natural gas come from?

    Just as radon is present in the soil and rock of the UK mainland it is also present in the rock from which coal, oil and natural gas are extracted. This means that traces can be found in supplies of coal, oil and natural gas.


    How high are the levels of radon in natural gas?

    The levels of radon in sources of UK natural gas have been monitored since the 1970s and are very low.

    The NRPB has shown that the radon in natural gas presents no significant health risk to gas consumers.

    The extra radiation which an average gas customer receives from cooking and central heating over a whole year is less that half the amount of radiation received during a plane flight to Spain.


    Do other countries have radon in their natural gas?

    The presence of radon in natural gas has been known for a long time worldwide - since the early 1900s. According to an expert committee of the United Nations, the levels found in the natural gas extracted from the North Sea are much lower than those found in gas supplies in other parts of the world.


    How does this affect you?

    To put things into perspective:

    • Over a year the average person in the UK is exposed to 2,600 units in their everyday life.
    • The extra yearly dose received by a domestic customer using gas for cooking and central heating is 4 units. That is 650 times lower than the dose from everyday activities.

    The following diagram allows a comparision of those doses received from various sources of radiation - both natural and artificial.

    20,000 maximum additional dose recommended

    2,600 average dose from natural radiation in the UK

    1,000 maximum additional dose recommended for a member of the public

    500 average dose from being a heavy consumer of seafood

    70 approximate additional dose during a 15 hour flight, e.g. a return flight from London to North America

    20 dose from a single chest x-ray

    10 approximate additional dose during a two hour flight e.g. to Spain

    4 Average annual dose to a domestic customer using natural gas for cooking and central heating

    0.0001 estimated annual dose to a member of the public from a gas-fired power station (living in the vicinity of the station)

    *maximum additional dose recommended in 1990 by the International Commission on Radiological Protection.


    Why have you not heard about this before?

    The levels present in the UK have not required any special precautions to be taken by gas customers and so additional information about this subject was not produced.

    There has been a recent change in European Legislation covering sources of radiation. The European Union is harmonising its legislation with international standards. It is in response to the interest generated by these changes that this information is being provided.


    Do you need to do anything?

    There is no significant risk to your health from radon in natural gas. The levels of radon in gas are so low that there is no need to take any special precautions.

    There are regular checks in place by the NRPB and the gas industry to ensure that the levels of radon in natural gas supplied to you remain very low.


    Further Information

    If you wish to know more about this subject or have any concerns please contact:

    The National Radiological Protection Board
    Chilton
    Didcot
    Oxon
    OX11 0RQ
    Tel: +44(0)1235 831600
    Fax: +44(0)1235 833891
    www.hpa.org.uk/radiation


    The Institution of Gas Engineers and Managers
    IGEM House
    26-28 High Street
    Kegworth
    Derbyshire
    DE74 2DA
    Tel: +44(0)844 375 4436
    fax: +44(0)1509 678198