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Gas flows jump off the line on Transco's Atlantic Sunrise pipeline expansion

Marcellus Shale-linked pieces of Williams Cos. Inc.'s 1.7-Bcf/d Atlantic Sunrise expansion of the Transcontinental Gas Pipe Line Co. LLC natural gas pipeline system accelerated to full transportation capacity when they went into service on Oct. 6, immediately adding substantial takeaway to a major U.S. production area.

Transco received authorization from the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission to put the bulk of its $3 billion Atlantic Sunrise project into service in an Oct. 4 letter, including two segments in Pennsylvania adding almost 200 miles of new pipeline. The company had already placed about 550 MMcf/d of gas transportation capacity in service from project facilities on the Transco system. (FERC dockets CP15-138, CP17-212)

S&P Global Market Intelligence pipeline flow data showed that the two greenfield segments went from zero to right around full capacity between Oct. 5 and Oct. 6. Scheduled deliveries on the Central Penn Line North went to 850 MMcf/d and stayed close to that level in the following days, with no available capacity. Scheduled deliveries on the Central Penn Line South went to almost 1.7 Bcf/d and stayed there, with no available capacity. Utilization rates were 100%. The two segments are in line, not parallel.

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The Atlantic Sunrise project is designed to move Marcellus gas to mid-Atlantic markets and deep into the Southeast along the Transco mainline. Analysts have said the project will help move gas to Dominion Energy Inc.'s Cove Point natural gas export terminal in Maryland, other LNG terminals on the Gulf Coast and customers in the South.

Marcellus producer Cabot Oil & Gas Corp. has contracted for 1 Bcf/d of transportation service, more than half of Atlantic Sunrise's total capacity. When FERC approved the project in February 2017, other anchor shippers included Seneca Resources Corp., Southwestern Energy Co. and WGL Midstream Inc.

In addition to the new pipeline and pipeline loop in Pennsylvania, Atlantic Sunrise included two new compressors in Pennsylvania, compression modifications and other adjustments to three compressor stations in Pennsylvania and Maryland, and other facilities and modifications on the Transco system.

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Pipeline flow data is available on the S&P Global Market Intelligence platform by clicking on the pipeline point and pipeline zone summaries under the "Natural Gas" tab at the top of the web page. Pipeline project information is available under the "Projects" tab.