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FERC pushes back review of Transco's Virginia Southside II project

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FERC pushes back review of Transco's Virginia Southside II project

FERC staff revised the date for completing an environmentalreview of Transcontinental GasPipe Line Co. LLC's proposed Virginia Southside II natural gaspipeline expansion project to May 13.

In an April 29 notice, the commission released the staff'srevised schedule for the environmental assessment, or EA. The staff plans toissue the assessment on May 13, instead of on as it originally planned.Cooperating federal agencies will have until Aug. 11 to complete their own workon the project review.

"FERC staff is taking the time it needs to ensureissues are addressed thoroughly in the EA," FERC spokeswoman Mary O'Driscollexplained in a written statement.

FERC issued an earlier notice of intent to prepare anenvironmental assessment on May 6, 2015. The Virginia Department ofConservation and Recreation, Virginia Department of Environmental Quality,Virginia Department of Historical Resources, Appalachian Mountain Advocates,Sierra Club and individuals responded with comments. The comments includedconcerns regarding the project's impacts on local wildlife and the environment,effects on historic properties, proximity to residences and easement compensation,compliance with the state's Coastal Zone Management Program, and cumulativeeffects from nearby projects, specifically Transco's and theGreensville power plant.

WilliamsPartners LP's Transco applied for the Virginia Southside IIexpansion project in a March 2015 application to FERC. At the time, the companyrequested that FERC approve the project by January 2016 so it could put theproject in service by Dec. 1, 2017. It estimated the total cost of the projectat $190.8 million.

If the project is approved by FERC, it would deliverapproximately 250,000 Dth/d of firm transportation capacity to a lateralpipeline off Transco's Brunswick lateral in Virginia. The project would serveVirginia Power Services Energy Corp.Inc.'s proposed 1,580-MW combined-cycle power station inGreensville County, Va. Virginia Power Services is an affiliate of and a subsidiary of DominionResources Inc.

The expansion project would include 4.3 miles of new24-inch-diameter pipeline, a pig launcher and receiver facilities, and a meterand regulator station. It would also add a total of almost 47,000 horsepower ofcompression, split between two compressor stations in Virginia.(CP15-118)