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Pa. agency approves Shell permits to build pipeline to ethane cracker

Shell Pipeline Co. LP could soon build its Falcon ethane pipeline system after Pennsylvania's Department of Environmental Protection approved its applications for the project, which would run from gas processing plants in Ohio, Pennsylvania and West Virginia to an ethane cracker being developed by a Royal Dutch Shell PLC unit.

The department issued permits to Shell Pipeline for water obstruction and encroachment as well as erosion and sediment control after a technical review of the applications and public feedback, according to a Dec. 20 news release from the department.

The Falcon pipeline would run through Washington, Allegheny and Beaver counties in Pennsylvania to Shell Chemical Appalachia LLC's petrochemical complex in Beaver County, Pa., and connect facilities in Ohio to the plant. About 45.5 miles of the pipeline would be in Pennsylvania, according to the department.

The ethane pipeline's construction and operation would be under the jurisdiction of the U.S. Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration.

Shell Pipeline filed applications with the DEP in January to allow construction of the ethane pipeline system after soliciting transportation commitments through a binding open season.