Changes to the Gas Safety (Management) Regulations 1996
The Gas Safety (Management) (Amendment) Regulations 2023
Amendments to the Gas Safety (Management) Regulations 1996 have been approved by government. This brings to a conclusion the review of gas quality regulation.
The regulatory changes made through the Gas Safety (Management) (Amendment) Regulations 2023, came into force from 6 April 2023, they include:
- gas that is permitted in gas networks in Great Britain must have a relative density of ≤0.700. The incomplete combustion factor and sooting index values are no longer required in order to comply with Schedule 3
- gas that is permitted in gas networks in Great Britain may have an oxygen content of ≤1% (molar) so long as it is conveyed at pressures ≤38 barg. The permitted oxygen content for gases conveyed at pressures above 38 barg will remain ≤0.2% (molar)
- liquified natural gas import facilities will be subject to the co-operation requirements set down by the regulations
- the gas emergency telephone service is now known as the Emergency Reporting Service. The function of the service is remaining the same however no gas network may operate without an emergency reporting service provider in place and a new schedule has been created outlining the particulars to be included in the safety case of the emergency reporting service provider
- the lower Wobbe Number limit for gas permitted in gas networks in Great Britain will change to ≥46.5MJ/m3 on 6 April 2025
- pipelines conveying biomethane must be operated with a safety case – this came into force on 6 April 2023. However, dutyholders will have until 6 October 2024 to prepare and submit a safety case to HSE if they are not already operating with one. Biomethane can continue to be conveyed to treatment or blending points if the gas requires them in order to bring it into conformity with Schedule 3 gas quality specifications
These changes maintain and improve the standards of safety that have been achieved to date by the Gas Safety (Management) Regulations 1996 in extending existing provisions to relevant stakeholders and dutyholders. This provides clarity and consistency in how pipelines are safely operated and by ensuring that regulation adequately reflects and controls current industry practices and standards.