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Spire applies to FERC for 400,000-Dth/d St. Louis line off of REX


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Spire applies to FERC for 400,000-Dth/d St. Louis line off of REX

A unit of Midwest natural gas utility conglomerate Spire Inc. applied to FERC for a pipeline that would pull about 400,000 Dth/d of gas off the Rockies Express Pipeline LLC system to service customers in the St. Louis metropolitan area and other eastern Missouri counties.

"This will provide substantial benefits to residential, commercial, and industrial consumers, gas utilities, and electric generators in the region, as the project will both enhance competition and supply diversification and improve reliability to a region that is currently constrained with respect to pipeline capacity," Spire STL Pipeline LLC said in a Jan. 26 application. "The project will connect the St. Louis region to the most competitively priced and productive natural gas supply areas in the eastern and western United States."

The Spire St. Louis pipeline project is part of the expansion plans of Spire Inc., known until April 2016 as the Laclede Group. Spire said it has entered into an agreement with gas utility and Spire affiliate Laclede Gas Co. for a binding commitment to purchase 350,000 Dth/d of firm transportation service for 20 years.

"Spire has also received expressions of interest from other prospective shippers, and is hopeful that additional precedent agreements will be executed as the project progresses through the regulatory approval process," the company told FERC.

The pipeline project would include about 60 miles of new 24-inch-diameter pipeline, running from an interconnection with the Rockies Express pipeline in Scott County, Ill., to a 20-inch-diameter transmission pipeline in St. Louis County, Mo., Line 880, owned by Laclede Gas. The project would also involve the purchase of Line 880 from Laclede Gas and modification of about nine miles of the pipeline, which would connect the new part of the project to Enable Midstream Partners' Enable Mississippi River Transmission LLC pipeline in St. Louis County. The roughly 66-mile project would cross the Mississippi and Missouri rivers.

The total cost of the project is expected to be around $220.3 million, according to the application. Spire asked for FERC to grant a certificate by Dec. 1. The company anticipated an in-service date of Nov. 1, 2018, which is when service to Laclede Gas is set to begin. (FERC docket CP17-40)