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Kinder Morgan's Permian Highway Pipeline resumes full construction after disruption


Suspicious device removed, being examined

Up to 2.1 Bcf/d gas project has faced opposition

Houston — Kinder Morgan resumed full construction Sept. 2 on its Permian Highway Pipeline, the company said, a day after the discovery of a suspicious device left along the route of the natural gas project shut down a section of work in Texas.

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The device, which Kinder Morgan has interchangeably referred to as a package, was removed after being discovered by pipeline contractors in Blanco County and was still being examined, the pipeline operator said in an e-mail Sept. 2.

The up to 2.1 Bcf/d pipeline, which is scheduled to enter service in early 2021, is being designed to transport gas from the Waha, Texas, area to the US Gulf Coast and Mexico markets. It would complement Kinder Morgan's Gulf Coast Express, which started up in 2019.

"The construction area has been thoroughly inspected by PHP and law enforcement, and after confirming the safety of the construction site and our crews, we are resuming full construction activities," Kinder Morgan said. "PHP will continue to investigate and prosecute any individuals who are discovered to be threatening the safety or security of our employees and crews."

PHP is among a number of US natural gas infrastructure projects that have faced opposition from landowners and environmental groups. The compensation amounts the company was offering to pay for rights of way acquired through eminent domain condemnations was among the disputes.

In September 2018, Kinder Morgan made a positive final investment decision to build Permian Highway Pipeline. Shippers include EagleClaw Midstream Ventures, Apache and ExxonMobil's XTO Energy.

Kinder Morgan, which moves more than a third of the gas consumed in the US, is building and will operate the pipeline. It, EagleClaw Midstream and Altus Midstream each hold an ownership interest in the project of approximately 26.6%, and an affiliate of an anchor shipper has a 20% interest.