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Trio of Spectra gas projects OK'd; destruction of house haunts ETP's Rover


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Trio of Spectra gas projects OK'd; destruction of house haunts ETP's Rover

Spectra gets FERC OK for $442M trio of projects to move gas out of Pennsylvania

FERC authorized Texas Eastern Transmission LP's Access South, Adair Southwest and Lebanon Extension natural gas pipeline projects, which would provide 622,000 Dth/d of Appalachian supplies to Midwest and Southeastern markets.

The $442 million trio of projects sponsored by the Spectra Energy Partners LP subsidiary would supply customers with bidirectional flow capability for transportation to Gulf Coast markets and delivery along Texas Eastern's mainline system from Uniontown, Pa., to markets in Kentucky, Mississippi and Ohio. FERC's approval to construct and operate the three projects came Dec. 21 in a certificate of public convenience and necessity, subject to compliance measures including 15 environmental mitigation steps.

Destruction of house haunts Energy Transfer's huge Rover gas project

Energy Transfer Partners LP's Rover pipeline project faces a possible delay in its permitting and construction schedule after the developer knocked down a house of potential historic significance near the proposed route.

Despite the complication, Energy Transfer anticipated that FERC would issue a certificate order shortly, according to spokeswoman Vicki Granado.

Height Securities analyst Katie Bays said a quick approval might not happen. "We believe FERC will behave conservatively throughout this unprecedented process and withhold a decision until the [memorandum of agreement with stakeholders] has been prepared," Bays said in a Dec. 20 note. "This likely delays work for Rover to mid-late January, cutting into construction time ahead of the March 31 tree-clearing deadline."

FERC watchdog role likely unchanged under Trump

Former FERC enforcement officials are not expecting the change in presidential administration to greatly impact the commission's watchdog role, but new commissioners could bring nuanced views of what constitutes market manipulation.

Bob Pease said that in his 22 years as FERC's director of investigations, he served under a number of Republican chairmen of the commission and not once did he feel hamstrung in his duties.

FERC chairmen representing the GOP during his tenure, which spanned from 1987 to 2009, generally enforced the commission's dozen or so rules governing market manipulation to weed out and punish manipulative, bad behavior, he said.

US considers border-crossing permit for Spectra's Valley Crossing gas project

FERC sent the U.S. Department of State and Department of Defense information they need to review a cross-border permit for 2.6-Bcf/d natural gas transportation facilities between Texas and Mexico proposed by Spectra Energy Corp's Valley Crossing Pipeline LLC.

In separate Dec. 22 letters, FERC Deputy Secretary Nathaniel Davis asked Secretary of State John Kerry and Secretary of Defense Ashton Carter for their views on the proposed presidential permit, which all cross-border pipeline projects require. FERC enclosed copies of the Valley Crossing project application and a draft copy of the presidential permit order that would be granted if FERC approves the application. The draft permit included terms and conditions the State and Defense departments have required in similar cases.

FERC accepts Rockies Express rates for Rice Energy Marketing gas

FERC accepted tariff records filed by Rockies Express Pipeline LLC that included two new negotiated-rate gas transportation service agreements between Rockies Express and Rice Energy Marketing LLC.

In a Dec. 22 letter regarding the agreements, FERC told Tallgrass Energy Partners LP Vice President of Regulatory Affairs David Haag that the commission waived a notice requirement and accepted the tariff records. Rockies Express had requested the waiver of the commission's 30-day notice requirement to allow the tariff records to become effective Dec. 5.

Florida Gas proposes expansion to supply utility, manufacturer

Florida Gas Transmission Co. LLC asked FERC for authorization to expand its system to provide an extra 68,500 MMBtu/d of firm transportation service to Florida Public Utilities Co. and Ascend Performance Materials.

The Western Division project would provide the additional transportation capacity from a receipt point in George County, Miss., through a Florida Gas compressor station to a proposed interconnection with Florida Public Utilities in Escambia County, Ala. The project would include mainline looping and other facilities in Santa Rosa County, Fla., and other equipment at the new interconnection in Alabama. The project is expected to cost about $10.7 million.

FERC sets environmental review for Columbia Gas upgrade project

FERC staff plans to issue in March 2017 the environmental review for a Columbia Gas Transmission LLC natural gas pipeline modernization project in Ohio.

In a schedule for the project, FERC staff anticipated the environmental assessment would be available March 13, 2017. Federal agencies cooperating with FERC would have 90 days following its publication, until June 11, 2017, to finish their work on the review. The schedule was released in a Dec. 20 notice.