Modernizing the Gas Network: A Legal Perspective

26th Mar 2024

Modernizing the Gas Network: A Legal Perspective

In the ever-evolving landscape of energy law, the importance of staying ahead of infrastructure needs cannot be overstated. A recent case we had the privilege to work on illustrates this point, focusing on the modernisation of Carlisle’s gas network through the realignment and diversion of a gas main.

The project entailed replacing a section of the ageing metallic 300mm pipe with a new, more environmentally friendly 250mm plastic main. Additionally, a new section of pipe was required to be laid, which necessitated securing the necessary rights for this section and a temporary working strip. This was achieved through a Deed of Variation and Release, building on existing easements granted in the early 1980s.

This case is part of a broader, ambitious 30-year upgrade plan initiated in 2000, aimed at replacing thousands of miles of ageing gas pipes across Cumbria. This network is vital, carrying gas to a multitude of essential and everyday destinations – from homes to hospitals, schools, and offices across the county.

The benefits of this programme are manifold. Not only does it support local and national ambitions to achieve ‘net zero’ carbon emissions, but it also positions clean gases like hydrogen as an indispensable part of the UK’s energy mix. The new pipes significantly reduce the likelihood of methane release into the atmosphere, marking a critical step towards a more sustainable and eco-friendly energy infrastructure.

The work carried out by the regional gas transporter, is essential in ensuring the safe and reliable supply of gas to Cumbria’s residents. By replacing ageing metal pipework with new, more durable plastic pipes, we’re not just safeguarding today’s gas supply but are also preparing the network to transport alternative, greener fuels in the future.

This case underscores the supportive role legal professionals play in facilitating the transition to a more sustainable energy future. We can help pave the way for critical infrastructure projects that will serve our communities for decades to come.

Phillippa Holcroft
Phillippa Holcroft
DDI: 0161 929 3088

Contact Us