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Texas Eastern Files Bi-Directional Shale Triple-Play Project

Spectra Energy Partners LP's Texas Eastern Transmission LP has filed a certificate application at FERC for its 650,000 Dth/d Gulf Markets Expansion Project, which would provide capacity to move gas from the Marcellus/Utica shales in Appalachia and the Eagle Ford Shale in Texas to the Gulf Coast through the addition of bi-directional capability.

"The development of prolific natural gas basins in the Northeast and in Texas has expanded natural gas supply options and, combined with the development of liquefied natural gas [LNG] exports, is giving rise to an emerging dynamic in which gas supplies in the Northeast are being transported to the South while traditional north-to-south flows continue from Texas," the pipeline told the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission [CP15-90].

"The Gulf Markets Project addresses interest received both from producers desiring firm pipeline transportation service to growth markets in the Gulf Coast region as natural gas production comes online and from shippers seeking access to the Cameron Interstate Pipeline (CIP)."

Texas Eastern said it has made precedent agreements with Mitsubishi Corp., GDF Suez S.A., MMGS Inc., Range Resources-Appalachia LLC, and EQT Energy LLC for long-term firm transportation service for the entire capacity to be created by the project. Texas Eastern also has executed a precedent agreement with Cameron LNG LLC to utilize certain project capacity that becomes available before the commencement of service for the project shippers in order to support Cameron LNG's commissioning activities at the Cameron LNG Terminal (see Daily GPI, Feb. 24). An open season was held in late 2013 (see Daily GPI, Nov. 11, 2013).

According to the filing, the project involves the reversal of compressor stations but no pipeline looping or pick up and relay; therefore, Texas did not hold a reverse open season for existing shippers to release capacity.

The project would add receipt point capacity of 350,000 Dth/d in Market Zone 2, enhancing access to supplies from the Marcellus and Utica production areas, and it would add 150,000 Dth/d in Market Zone 1 (Zone M1) and 150,000 Dth/d in Zone STX, providing additional capacity for growing gas supplies from production areas in Texas. It would include additional delivery point capacity of 150,000 Dth/d in Zone M1; and 500,000 Dth/d in Zone WLA, including capacity at Texas Eastern's interconnection with Golden Triangle Storage and CIP.

With the exception of one new compressor station at Provident City in Lavaca County, TX, and a temporary wareyard adjacent to the existing Wheelersburg Compressor Station in Scioto County, OH, the additional capacity would be created through expansion and modification of existing above-ground facilities within Texas Eastern's existing footprint and without any additional pipeline facilities, the pipeline said.

"Since the project will provide additional bi-directional flow capability on the Texas Eastern system from the west side of the Uniontown Compressor Station in Zone M2 through the         Compressor Station in Zone WLA, existing customers on the Texas Eastern system will receive additional service reliability and flexibility with respect to secondary delivery point options on the system," the pipeline said.

"Moreover, by increasing the bi-directional capabilities of this segment of the Texas Eastern system, the project will increase the efficiency of the system and diversify supply sources that can be accessed by Zone M1 and Gulf Coast natural gas markets. Access to these additional supply sources also will afford Zone M1 and Gulf Coast natural gas market participants the ability to better manage price volatility."

Texas Eastern asked the Commission to OK the project by Nov. 20 for partial in-service by Nov. 1, 2016 and full in-service by Aug. 1, 2017.

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