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Iroquois Joins Spectra, Northeast Utilities in New England Pipe Project

Iroquois Gas Transmission Systems LP has signed on to the New England power generator-focused Access Northeast Project of Spectra Energy and Northeast Utilities, the partners said Monday.

Collaboration with regional natural gas asset owners has been an objective for Access Northeast, which was announced in September to help address demand for gas in New England, Northeast, Spectra Energy Corp. and Spectra Energy Partners said. Access Northeast would carry Appalachian Basin gas into New England using, in part, existing pipeline infrastructure.

"With FERC's recent issuance of a certificate approving the Constitution Pipeline Project and Iroquois' companion Wright [NY] Interconnect Project [see Shale DailyDec. 3Oct. 24], another major milestone in establishing a direct link to the Marcellus supply basin has been achieved," said Iroquois President Jeff Bruner.

Access Northeast would enhance Spectra's Algonquin and Maritimes pipeline systems, using existing pipeline routes. The project would be scalable and be capable of delivering more than 1 Bcf/d to serve the region's "most efficient" power plants and meet increasing demand from heating customers, the project partners said in September when the project was announced (see Daily GPISept. 16).

Bruner said the Wright Hub "will become a very significant physical source of Marcellus gas supply to New England and New York over the next several years."

Adding Iroquois and its pipeline infrastructure to the Access Northeast project "...provides a timely, scalable and cost-effective way to deliver natural gas to the most efficient power plants and, in turn, reduce electric rates for families and businesses," said Bill Yardley, Spectra Energy president of U.S. transmission and storage. "Together, Iroquois and Spectra Energy's Algonquin and Maritimes pipelines are directly connected to more than 70% of New England's natural gas fired electric generation."

During an upcoming Access Northeast open season, prospective shippers will be able to select from multiple receipt point options along the Algonquin system, including the Iroquois pipeline at Wright. Shippers will also have the opportunity to choose from Algonquin's receipt points with other existing interconnecting pipelines: Texas Eastern Transmission, Millennium, Tennessee Gas Pipeline, Columbia Gas, and Transcontinental Gas Pipeline; as well as future connections like the PennEast Project, which is to connect directly to Marcellus Shale production in northeast Pennsylvania. Spectra Energy recently became a partner in the development of PennEast Pipeline (see Shale Daily, Nov. 4).

Access Northeast has an anticipated in-service date of November 2018.

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