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Sabal Trail Seeks FERC OK to Begin Service in Late May

Sabal Trail Transmission LLC is seeking FERC authorization to place part of its 1.07 million Dth/d pipeline into service by the end of this month.

In a Wednesday filing to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, Sabal [CP15-17] asked the Commission to grant its request by May 26 in order to have certain facilities up and running by May 31.

In particular, Sabal said anchor shipper Florida Power & Light Co. (FPL) wants 400,000 Dth/d of service on the pipeline available "at the earliest possible time." Sabal said it wants "to commence service promptly to FPL" in order to be ready for peak summer cooling demand.

Sabal, a joint venture of Spectra Energy Partners LP, NextEra Energy Inc. and Duke Energy, consists of about 515 miles of pipeline, six compressor stations and six meter stations across Alabama, Georgia and Florida. The project, combined with Transcontinental Gas Pipe Line Co.'s (Transco) Hillabee Expansion on one end and the Florida Southeast Connection project on the other, would open up additional deliveries of gas into Florida from the Transco Zone 4 pool.

Sabal asked FERC for authorization to place facilities associated with the first phase of its project into service, including:

  • Its Mainline Pipeline, 482.4 miles of 36-inch diameter pipeline stretching from the Transco interconnect in Tallapoosa County, AL, to an interconnect with Florida Southeast Connection in Osceola County, FL;
  • A 30,000 hp compressor station in Tallapoosa County, AL;
  • A 20,500 hp compressor in Osceola County, FL;
  • And several metering stations in Alabama and Florida.

Sabal said the facilities included in its start-up request will enable it to provide up to 470,000 Dth/d of capacity on the greenfield portion of the project and allow it to take up to 400,000 Dth/d of capacity created by the Hillabee Expansion. The total designed capacity for the first phase of the project is 830,000 Dth/d, Sabal said.

During the summer, FGT Citygate has consistently been one of the most expensive points in the country for the day-ahead market. Gas delivered there traded as high as $6.82/MMBtu in July 2016, a nearly $4 premium to Henry Hub, according to Daily GPIprices.

This summer, Sabal figures to help alleviate some of those constraints into Florida, which relies heavily on natural gas-fired electric generation.

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