Berkshire Hathaway Energy’s gas pipeline businesses have significantly reduced and avoided releases of methane, thus reducing greenhouse gas emissions, enhancing pipeline integrity, making their operations safer, and reducing costs for customers through reductions in lost gas. We have developed methane reduction goals and track progress toward those goals; these goals are advanced through emphasizing leading practices and implementing strategies to limit methane emissions. The combined leak rate for Northern Natural Gas and Kern River in 2016 and 2017 was 0.053% and 0.046%, respectively. The leak rate is measured as a percentage of throughput and is significantly below the goal of the ONE Future Initiative of 1%.
Northern, along with all of the Berkshire Hathaway Energy subsidiaries, believes responsible environmental management is good business; it benefits our customers and improves the quality of the environment in which we live. Our policy establishes the environmental RESPECT principles that guide our corporate commitment to the environment.
All levels of management are responsible for integrating environmental management programs into business processes in order to measure and improve environmental performance. All employees are responsible and accountable for understanding and incorporating environmental compliance requirements into their daily work activities with the obligation to bring issues and concerns forward for resolution.
We will responsibly use natural resources and pursue increased efficiencies that reduce waste and emissions at their source. We will develop sustainable operations and implement environmental projects designed to leave a clean, healthy environment for our children and future generations.
We will respect our natural resources and take care in balancing the needs of customers with our obligation to future generations. We will seek opportunities to preserve, restore, protect and improve our natural surroundings.
We will set challenging goals and assess our ability to continually improve our environmental performance. Through the strategic management of our assets, we will improve the environment and contribute to our business success.
We will perform audits to evaluate our environmental compliance and use the results to improve our operations and their impact on the environment.
We will foster open dialogue and informed decision making through communication of environmental information with management, employees and the public. We will work with governments and others in creating responsible environmental laws and regulations reflective of sound public policy.
We will provide the training necessary for our employees to perform their environmental responsibilities. We will encourage and provide opportunities for employees to learn more about the environment and foster an atmosphere of creating cost effective solutions that go beyond compliance.