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NextEra project, 3rd piece of Southeast Market Pipelines, authorized for service

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NextEra project, 3rd piece of Southeast Market Pipelines, authorized for service

The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission told NextEra Energy Inc.'s Florida Southeast Connection LLC that it could put in service its Florida Southeast Connection natural gas transportation project, the third component of the 1.1-Bcf/d Southeast Market Pipelines system that will substantially increase the gas available to Florida power generators.

The Florida Southeast Connection project, estimated to cost about $537.3 million at the time of application, consists of a 126-mile pipeline in Florida at the southern end of the larger system. The line was designed to provide up to 640,000 Dth/d of transportation capacity from the Central Florida Hub to the Martin Clean Energy Center of NextEra's Florida Power & Light Co. (FERC docket CP14-554)

FERC has also authorized service on the first stages of the sister projects in the Southeast Market Pipelines system. The 516-mile Sabal Trail Transmission LLC gas pipeline project received the authorization on June 9, and the Hillabee pipeline expansion project received it on June 7. NextEra, Enbridge Inc. and Duke Energy Corp. are partners in the Sabal Trail pipeline, which would run from Alabama through Georgia and deep into Florida. Williams Partners LP's Transcontinental Gas Pipe Line Co. LLC is developing the Hillabee expansion, which will provide transportation capacity at the northern end of the new system. (FERC dockets CP15-16, CP15-17)

The commission approved all three projects in February 2016. Environmental groups have challenged the approval in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit. (U.S. Appeals Court for the D.C. Circuit No. 16-1329)

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