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ETP gets FERC approval for 1.3-Bcf/d border-crossing gas pipeline

FERC approved an EnergyTransfer Partners LP subsidiary's border-crossing pipeline projectthat will export up to 1.3 Bcf/d of natural gas from the U.S. into Mexicanmarkets.

The May 5 FERC order issued a presidential permit for aproject crossing one of the U.S. international borders and grantedauthorization under Section 3 of the Natural Gas Act for the construction andoperation of the facilities.

"Authorization … will promote national economic policyby reducing barriers to foreign trade and stimulating the flow of goods andservices between the United States and Mexico, implementing a gas import/exportarrangement that has been authorized by DOE's Office of Fossil Energy,"the order said.

The PresidioBorder Crossing project, which will transport natural gas suppliesfrom Texas to expanding electric and industrial users in Mexico, was proposedby Trans-Pecos Pipeline LLC.The $3.6 million project will involve installation of approximately 1,093 feetof 42-inch-diameter pipeline under the Rio Grande River using a horizontaldirectional drill. The pipeline will travel from Presidio County, Texas, toChihuahua, Mexico. A Mexican affiliate company will complete the project on theMexican side of the border, which will include construction of a stub pipelineto an interconnection with the Mexican pipeline grid.

The project is expected to connect to a 148-mile-long42-inch-diameter intrastate pipeline on the U.S. side of theborder that will run to a hub in Pecos County, Texas. "Trans-Pecos alsostates that while it will initially provide only intrastate service on itscontemplated upstream pipeline, it may at a later time provide transportationservices under Section 311 of the Natural Gas Policy Act," the order said.

The order stipulates that the project facilities must becompleted and in service by May 5, 2019. (CP15-500)

Trans Pecos, owned by Energy Transfer Mexicana LLC, secureda blanket authorization from the U.S. Department of Energy in June 2015 toimport and export up to 500 Bcf/d from any point on the U.S.-Mexico border fora two-year period. Energy Transfer Mexicana is a subsidiary of EnergyTransfer Partners.