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Bluewater Gas Storage to alleviate constraints on Mich. system

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Bluewater Gas Storage to alleviate constraints on Mich. system

Bluewater Gas Storage LLC applied with the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission to build a new natural gas compressor station in Michigan that would restore its firm delivery capacity to an interconnect with Vector Pipeline LP that has been constrained since 2008 due to pressure limitations.

Bluewater told FERC in a May 23 abbreviated application that the project would allow consistent delivery of its project customers' maximum daily storage withdrawals so they can provide gas to local distribution companies and in doing so, would enhance the reliability and flexibility of the gas system in the area. Bluewater's project customers include Wisconsin Gas LLC, Wisconsin Electric Power Co. and Wisconsin Public Service Corp.

The Bluewater Natural Gas Holding LLC subsidiary said project construction would need to begin by June 2020 to meet an in-service date prior to the 2021-2022 storage withdrawal season.

The new compressor station would restore an authorized 500,000 Mcf/d of firm gas delivery capacity to the interconnect with Vector Pipeline. The capacity has been constrained to about 120,000 Mcf/d since 2008.

The facility would be sited in Ray Township in Macomb County, Mich., adjacent to Bluewater's 20-inch-diameter pipeline. Bluewater's gas storage facilities comprise the Columbus III storage facility, which has a working gas storage capacity of 26.2 Bcf; the leased Kimball 27 storage facility with a working gas capacity of 3.05 Bcf; and the 30-mile Bluewater pipeline system in Macomb and St. Clair counties in Michigan, according to the application. At its western end, the pipeline connects with Vector Pipeline as well as another pipeline and gas distribution systems. The eastern end extends to the U.S.-Canada border and interconnects with the Union Gas Ltd. system. (FERC docket CP19-471)

In February 2017, WEC Energy Group Inc. announced it would acquire Bluewater Natural Gas Holding from Plains All American Pipeline LP for $230 million. WEC is one of the largest electric and gas holding companies in the United States and serves nearly 4.5 million customers in Wisconsin, Illinois, Michigan and Minnesota through utility subsidiaries, including the three customers of the Bluewater project.