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Columbia gets FERC sign-off for 1.3 Bcf/d WB XPress pipeline project

Columbia Gas Transmission won certificate approval Friday from the US Federal Energy Regulatory Commission for the 29-mile, 1.3 Bcf/d WB XPress natural gas pipeline project.

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The project will increase capacity along Columbia's existing WB Line, which runs bi-directionally through West Virginia and the northern part of Virginia.

The project will pick up gas around Braxton County, West Virginia, and deliver 500 MMcf/d eastbound into interconnects with Cove Point Pipeline and Transcontinental Gas Pipe Line as well as sending 800 MMcf/d westbound into interconnects with Tennessee Gas at Broad Run and existing Columbia infrastructure including Columbia Gas Appalachia Pool.

The FERC action came after Columbia parent TransCanada recently warned FERC of pressure on its schedules for WB XPress and its 171-mile, 2.7 Bcf/d Mountaineer XPress project without prompt approval, particularly as an environmental window controlling timing of tree clearing had already opened.

A TransCanada executive said in a recent earnings call the company expected to have FERC certificates for the WB XPress, Mountaineer XPress and Gulf XPress projects in the fourth quarter of this year, and place all three projects in service in 2018.

--Maya Weber, maya.weber@spglobal.com

--Edited by Dan Lalor, daniel.lalor@spglobal.com