Does anyone know where I can get or find shapefiles for pipelines (USA location)? Preferably free as I've never done pipelines before and I'm meeting a client next week that is doing pipeline work.

How much different is pipeline from OG well location/placement etc.? I use ArcEditor 10.0.

9 Answers 9


I am not aware of any free source of shapefiles for pipelines. PHMSA's National Pipeline Mapping System (NPMS) does provide a viewer but it doesn't allow data to be downloaded. NPMS data can only be viewed one county at a time which is rather hard to use. NPMS data consists of gas transmission pipelines and hazardous liquid trunklines. It does not contain gathering or distribution pipelines. See https://www.npms.phmsa.dot.gov/

  • This is the sole source for pipeline data. You can be given access to the data, but it is a very involved process with heavy restrictions. I have access for emergency management purposes, but I am not even allowed to share the data files with other emergency management specialists in my office much less use it in any public maps or projects involving a third party. Commented Aug 12, 2012 at 17:51
  • This page is the application process for GIS data access: npms.phmsa.dot.gov/subapp.asp?app=data&act=data_dissem With the most important part being "operators and Federal, state, and local government officials only." Commented Aug 12, 2012 at 17:51
  • ok.. thank you all! I found a pipeline shp file...
    – Zoran
    Commented Aug 22, 2012 at 23:55

This data layer type is not usually freely distributed because:

  • Privately owned (utility company)
  • May not be in digital format

If you want to see a general data model, check out the ArcGIS Pipeline Data Model.

  • 8
    you can also add security concerns (e.g. national security/preventing terrorist attacks on the pipelines) to the list of reasons
    – user3461
    Commented Aug 10, 2012 at 17:38
  • 3
    + even when purchase from a company the non-disclosure agreements (NDA) will restrict use. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Non-disclosure_agreement
    – Mapperz
    Commented Aug 10, 2012 at 17:38
  • Thats what I figured. If anyone of you all have done pipeline mapping previously, is it more difficult or same as doing OG wells? What does it involve that is different the wells? Thanks... Z
    – Zoran
    Commented Aug 10, 2012 at 17:48
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    It looks like the government is violating its own standards for keeping the information private. Their access guidelines are: fgdc.gov/policyandplanning/Access%20Guidelines.pdf From the flow chart: "Is the information unique to these data? No --> Safeguarding is not justified " Commented Apr 8, 2014 at 19:13
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    @AaronKreider any update on this? Commented Dec 7, 2015 at 22:35

Revisiting an old topic, but some might benefit from this link


Not particularly high resolution, but it does show many of the major pipelines.


Free shapefiles for USA "Crude Oil pipelines" and "Natural Gas Interstate and Intrastate Pipelines" are available on the EIA website:


Look under "Maps"



USGS may have developed a pipeline data set around 2000. http://nationalmap.gov/transport.html

There is a "transportation layer" for the entire United States which includes pipelines. I emailed a couple years ago to ask about it and they said you can get it by sending a hard drive.

  • The government made it private due to Sept 11. This is in violation of their data policy as the information is available from private corporations for a hefty price (and they are only allowed to restrict information that is not available from private corporations). Judicial action, or threats of it, might make this information free. Commented Dec 13, 2017 at 23:26

I was searching for pipeline data a few months back and after learning the shortcomings of most of the publicly-available data out there (which isn't much), I researched the commercially-available data quite a bit. Ultimately there were three data vendors I considered: Platts, Rextag, and MAPSearch. Each of them offers a similar service, at similar prices, and with similar terms of use.

They all offer pipeline and other energy infrastructure data (transmission, gathering, etc.), separated into geographic regions (some use states, others groups of states). The pricing was similar, they were all within 10% of each other if I remember correctly, you pay per region/state for the data. The main thing was the licensing: you can't purchase the data outright, only license it annually. If you do not renew the license, you are required to destroy all the digital data and any data derived from it. You can keep any finished paper maps/PDFs. They all had license terms like this.

They all offer sample data downloads so you can get some idea of what you're buying, as well as data dictionaries so you can see the data fields they use.


Your best bet for obtaining the most comprehensive and up to date pipeline data is a commercial resource since their income depends on the quality. Try American Energy mapping for pipelines and wells. www.americanenergymapping.com

(I am a salesperson for American Energy Mapping.)

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    Welcome to our site, Michael! It is crucial that people identify their affiliations when a potential conflict of interest might arise in their answer. If you want to use our site for advertising, please see our faq.
    – whuber
    Commented Oct 11, 2012 at 18:31

I know we use a private company called PetroSwell Maps & Data for Texas well and pipeline data. www.petroswell.com, they have pretty good prices and deliver the data really quickly.


OpenStreetMap has a good bit of pipeline data, you can get it via the Overpass API by searching for "man_made"="pipeline" within your preferred bounding box. You can visually check your results using Overpass Turbo.

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