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Pennsylvania natural gas leaks among worst in nation

From the article:

The distribution network to homes and businesses, not to be confused with much larger interstate transmission lines, includes nearly 1.3 million miles of pipe nationwide.

Nationally, accidents involving distribution lines have killed more than 120 people, injured more than 500 others and caused more than $775 million in damage since 2004, according to the Tribune-Review analysis.

Peoples Natural Gas and Columbia Gas of Pennsylvania plan to spend more than $1 billion to replace pipe over the next few years. Other utilities around the state and the nation will spend billions more to remove high-risk pipe.

"Should we replace it? Yes. But how do we pay for all of that?" Gov. Tom Corbett told the newspaper in a recent interview. "Replacing (pipe) isn't as nice as building a park or building a bridge, is it?"

Ken Johnston, Peoples' vice president of operations, said the company expects to replace the last of its cast iron pipe this year and its approximately 4,000 miles of unprotected and bare steel pipe over 20 years.

Read more here.