FERC has given a subsidiary of National Fuel Gas Co. (NFG) permission to place into service a key pipeline element of its $76.1 million West Side Expansion and Modernization Project [CP14-70] in western Pennsylvania, about three weeks before the original in-service date.
In a letter Thursday, Terry Turpin, director of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission's gas environment and engineering division, authorized National Fuel Gas Supply Corp. to commence service on Line N, a 23-mile, 24-inch diameter pipeline traversing Beaver and Washington counties.
Turpin said the approval was based on FERC's inspection of the project site on Sept. 23 "and NFG's recent project status reports, which demonstrate that restoration of the disturbed areas is proceeding satisfactorily." He reminded the company that it must still comply with all applicable terms and conditions for the project.
NFG had requested the earlier in-service date in late September (see Daily GPI, Sept. 25). That followed a request earlier in the month to enter into service two compressor stations integral to the project (see Daily GPI, Sept. 2). At the time, NFG said placing the components into service early would help it provide partial service to a project shipper, Range Resources Appalachia LLC, on an interim basis.
The project calls for increasing incremental capacity on the 73-mile Line N -- originally built in 1947 -- by 175,000 Dth/d. It includes the replacement of 23 miles of 20-inch diameter pipeline with 24-inch diameter pipe. NFG replaced 50 miles of the system in 2012 and filed with FERC to replace the remaining segment in February 2014. The company had originally requested a certificate of public convenience and necessity to begin full service by Nov. 1.
Range has subscribed for 145,000 Dth/d of firm capacity on Line N, while NFG's exploration and production subsidiary, Seneca Resources Corp., has subscribed for 30,000 Dth/d. The pipeline also has interconnections with Texas Eastern Transmission and Tennessee Gas Pipeline.