Kinder Morgan has a large footprint of diversified and strategically located assets, and we are the market leader in our core businesses. For example, we are:
KMI owns the general partner and limited partner interests in both KMP and EPB. KMP is one of the largest publicly traded pipeline master limited partnerships in America. KMR is a limited liability company and its only significant assets are the partnership units it owns in KMP. EPB is a publicly traded pipeline master limited partnership.
We have been executing the same strategy since KMP was formed in 1997. We operate mostly fee-based assets that are core to North American energy infrastructure. These assets generate large stable cash flows, and we distribute that cash out to our unitholders and our shareholders. We continually leverage our large footprint of assets and actively pursue expansions, joint ventures and acquisitions so that we can further increase the distributions at KMP, KMR and EPB and the dividends at KMI.
We have minimal exposure to commodity price volatility because we typically don't own the energy products that we transport, store or handle. As a result, our businesses have been relatively stable in almost all types of market conditions. Where we do have exposure to commodity price risk, such as in our CO2 business segment, we use a long-term hedging strategy to partially mitigate that risk.
Our business model has worked well and KMP has delivered a compound average annual return of 25 percent to unitholders over the past 15 years. KMR and EPB have also performed well historically, along with KMI, which had a successful IPO in February of 2011.
In addition to delivering value to our shareholders and meeting our customers' needs, we focus on operating our assets safely to protect the public, our employees and the environment. We spend hundreds of millions of dollars each year on integrity management and maintenance programs to operate our assets safely.
At Kinder Morgan, we pride ourselves on being a different kind of energy company. What makes us different? It starts at the top with Chairman and CEO Richard D. Kinder, who earns a salary of $1 per year and does not receive a bonus, stock options or restricted stock grants. We like to say that Kinder Morgan is a company run by shareholders for shareholders. Additionally, we eliminate unnecessary corporate overhead expenses such as corporate aircraft, sponsorships, sports tickets and executive perks. In addition, we cap senior executives' base salaries below industry standards. Their financial incentives, such as bonuses, are tied directly to the performance of the company and their own personal performances.
Kinder Morgan has been conducting its business transparently long before it became a corporate buzz word. To our knowledge, we are the only S&P 500 company that publishes its annual budget on its web site, which enables investors and others to follow our progress throughout the year. We also post our environmental, health and safety (EHS) performance on our web site. KMP continues to outperform the industry averages in most safety and release related categories.
Kinder Morgan does not have a Political Action Committee (PAC), nor do we make any political contributions. Any political contributions made by executives or employees are made individually as private citizens with their own personal money.
Kinder Morgan has more than 11,000 employees and has a combined enterprise value of approximately $100 billion.