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Regulatory and Code Updates for August 2015

Every month RAE produces a short summary of important changes to regulations and codes that may impact our clients. The following are the updates from the month of August:

Pressure equipment regulations typically make reference to specific engineering codes for acceptable designs, methodologies, and best practices, naming the particular edition of the code that is in force under the regulation. Because of this the codes that are in force in a jurisdiction often lags behind what is the most current edition, and periodically the jurisdiction must release amendments to the regulation identifying the new editions in force in the jurisdiction. In British Columbia the Power Engineers, Boiler, Pressure Vessel and Refrigeration Safety Regulation has been amended with the most recent editions of the ASME B31 series of engineering codes for pressure piping, ASME PTC 25, and CSA B51 and B52, among others.

Regulatory and Code Updates for July 2015

Every month RAE produces a short summary of important changes to regulations and codes that may impact our clients. The following are the updates from the month of July:

The 2015 editions of the ASME Boiler and Pressure Vessel Code were released and are available through the ASME website or through subscription services such as techstreet and IHS. The ASME BPVC is the primary reference for boiler and pressure vessel design and construction and is referenced in one form or another by most North American jurisdictions as the standard in the boiler and pressure vessel discipline. The ASME BPVC also contains sections on materials and welding that are referenced by other construction codes beyond those covering boilers and pressure vessels, for example the ASME B31 codes on pressure piping and the API 650 code regarding storage tanks.

Last month ABSA released an Information Bulletin regarding AB-512, and the following week the new AB-512 and AB-512(b) checklist were released on the ABSA website. The new edition of AB-512 is reorganized and has several new requirements and recommendations.

ABSA updated AB-31, the design registration application form to include two new checklists. One checklist, AB-31A, ensures that the minimum requirements are being met by the submission for pressure vessel submissions. The other, AB-31B, does the same for pressure piping submissions.

ABSA updated AB-506, Inspection and Servicing requirements separating out LPG plant storage and vessels in propane service.

Alberta Municipal Affairs re-released a variance to the Gas Code Regulation, VAR-GAS-01-13 Rev 1 as the previous revision expired June 30th. This variance allows for non-certified gas-fired equipment used for process applications in petroleum refineries, petrochemical plants, and upstream oil and gas sites to be inspected and accepted by a Professional Engineer. Historically many pieces of fired process equipment used in industry were engineered either to American standards or simply to good engineering practice and not CSA B149.3, as this equipment did not fall under the Gas Code. As the regulations changed this equipment became subject to the Gas Code, and now must be inspected and accepted in accordance with it. To facilitate this a variance was issued allowing Professional Engineers to inspect and accept the equipment in lieu of a certification body or inspection body.

Regulatory and Code updates for June 2015

Every month RAE produces a short summary of important changes to regulations and codes that may impact our clients. The following are the updates from the month of June:

ABSA released the following Information Bulletins:

  • IB15-007 Expiry of Examination Papers Passed and Operating Experience Gained for Certification under the PER. This supersedes a previous information bulletin, IB12-007, and reiterates that examinations required for a power engineers certificate are valid for seven years after they are passed. Afterwards the examination is no longer considered when applying for a higher certification and the exam will have to be rewritten.
  • An update to Information Bulletin IB14-010 Interpretation: Permanent Tack Welds. This interpretation is in regards to tack welds that are not completely removed prior to the completion of construction of a boiler, pressure vessel, or pressure piping system. In brief, permanent tack welding is considered welding under the Pressure Welders Regulation, as such the welders installing permanent tack welds must be certified, either through a Pressure Welder Certificate of Competency or a Pressure Tack Welder Certificate of Competency. Furthermore organizations planning on using a Pressure Tack Welder must include this in their QMS and have it accepted by ABSA.
  • IB15-008 Use of ASME B31.3-2014 in Alberta PWHT of P1 Materials to highlight the change in B31.3 that provides an exemption from post weld heat treatment (PWHT) for P1 materials of any thickness. The Code relies upon knowledgeable owners and designers to specify PWHT when necessary, and they should ensure PWHT is performed when required.
  • IB15-009 Quality Management Systems for Owner-User Pressure Equipment Integrity Management to notify Owner-Users of the new edition of AB-512, Edition 2. Owners which current have an owner user program must ensure their IMS is revised to meet the current AB-512 requirements. At the time of this blog post the newest edition of AB-512 hasn’t been posted on the ABSA website.

ABSA released a new revision of the AB-516 PESR User Guide. The PESR User Guide is a hefty document at 94 pages but a useful one. This document goes through the Pressure Equipment Safety Regulation (PESR), the primary regulation for integrity management under ABSA, and explains what each element in the regulation means. For people who are new to ABSA and the regulations this is an invaluable guide.

The June 2015 Edition of the Pressure News was released. This contains information on upcoming seminars, pressure tack welders, guidance on thermal liquid heating systems, and much more. Some announcements of note include:

  • The ABSA Design Survey kicked off a pilot project whereby submissions made by a “recognized design submitter” (RDS) are freed from some of the delays inherent in the current system through the use of an audit-based process and the principles of Quality Management. The final version of the program is expected to be ready by October.
  • ABSA is developing a document “Requirements for the Use of Engineered Pressure Enclosures” to define the Alberta requirements for EPEs. An Engineered Pressure Enclosure (EPE) is an enclosure designed for the purpose of stopping a leak for a limited period of time, until a proper repair can be implemented.

Alberta Municipal Affairs released STANDATA G-02-01a Uncertified Appliances and Equipment Require Special Inspection and Approval, this reiterates the need to have uncertified gas burning equipment inspected and approved, and has a table of inspection bodies approved for work in Alberta. Historically in industry many pieces of fired process equipment were built either to no standard or to American standards and did not necessarily meet CSA B149.3, these pieces of equipment must be inspected and certified as per paragraph 3(1) of the Gas Code Regulation. A previous variance, STANDATA VAR-GAS-01-13 allowed for this equipment to be inspected by a Professional Engineer.

The 2015 Edition of CSA Z662 Oil and Gas Pipeline Systems was released. This is the primary standard for pipelines in Canadian jurisdictions, and the standard used in Alberta under the Pipeline Rules.

Regulatory and Code updates for May 2015

Every month RAE produces a short summary of important changes to regulations and codes that may impact our clients. The following are the updates from the month of May:

There was only one major update this month, ABSA released information bulletin IB15-006 Use of Appendices 1-9 and 1-10 of ASME Section VIII Division 1 in Alberta. Appendix 1-9 and 1-10 of ASME VIII Div 1 contain an alternative method for designing reinforcement of openings in cylindrical and conical shells. This information bulletin provides conditions for the use of Appendices 1-9 and 1-10 that must be met for the design to be accepted by ABSA. These new conditions are ABSA’s response to concerns about the misuse or misunderstanding in the use of these appendices.

Lastly a reminder for companies operating pressure equipment in Saskatchewan: Current 2014/2015 Licenses to Operate expire on June 30th, now is the time to make sure you have renewed your license.

Regulatory and Code updates for April 2015

Every month RAE produces a short summary of important changes to regulations and codes that may impact our clients. The following are the updates from the month of April:

ABSA released an information bulletin, IB15-004 Emergency Discharge of Refrigerants – CSA B52 Annex B, which supersedes a previous directive from 2008. This bulletin regards refrigeration systems and their emergency discharge requirements. As per the code, CSA B52 clause 6.10, an emergency discharge system must be a consideration in the design of a refrigeration system. CSA B52 Annex B is one option to fulfill this requirement, and ABSA allows for another option: A design engineer may conduct a HAZOP study and identify all necessary actions to make the system safe. A copy of the HAZOP report, signed by a professional engineer, is then submitted to ABSA for evaluation. Details on what the HAZOP must consider are provided in the information bulletin.

ABSA released a revision to information bulletin IB10-006 Steam Pipelines, this revision restates the requirements, from ABSA, for the design registration and integrity management of steam pipelines and includes clarifications from the AER as to what constitutes a “steam pipeline”. Steam pipelines in the context of AER Directive 077 include:

  • The steam distribution pipelines, carrying steam at temperatures >120°C, from steam generators at the steam generation facility to the well pads
  • Production pipelines, carrying some combination of fluids at temperatures >120°C (oil, natural gas, water, and recovered steam), back from the well pads to the central processing facility

Regulatory and Code updates for March 2015

Every month RAE produces a short summary of important changes to regulations and codes that may impact our clients. The following are the updates from the month of March:

API Std 520 Sizing, Selection, and Installation of Pressure-Relieving Devices in Refineries, Part 2 Installation, 6th Edition was released. API 520 comes in two parts, part 1 governs the sizing and selection of pressure relief devices and part 2 (the new release) governs the installation of pressure relief devices. This includes requirements for the location of the PRD, inlet and discharge piping, isolation valves, handling, and maintenance. This is the first major update to API 510 part 2 since 2003.

The March edition of The Pressure News, the ABSA newsletter, was issued and it is a nice roundup of changes in the regulations, common issues that ABSA inspectors have found, and interpretations.

ABSA released IB15-003 Quality Management Systems for Pressure Relief Devices, which supersedes a previous bulletin, IB14-006, and re-affirms that AB-524 is the guiding document for the pressure relief devices and for the quality management systems of PSV service companies. It further extends the deferral for steam testing of UV stamped pressure relief valves to December 31, 2015, provided the owner has a compliance plan in accordance with AB-524a.

ABSA issued a minor update to AB-528 Requirements for Reduced Supervision of Power Plants, Thermal Liquid Heating Systems and Heating Plants. This was an editorial update and not a new edition.

ABSA released an updated AB-512a Owner-User PEIMP Scope and Responsibilities form. The new form simplifies some of the wording and adds new areas to indicate if replacement in kind of mechanically assembled piping components (in accordance with AB-523) or alternative test methods for pressure piping (in accordance with AB-519) will be used under the program.

With offices in Edmonton, Grande Prairie, Red Deer and Calgary, we are here to ensure that the needs of our clients are met.