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Texas Eastern Seeks to Improve Performance of Maryland Storage Site

Duke Energy pipeline Texas Eastern Transmission LP has filed an abbreviated application at FERC seeking to bolster the performance capability of its depleted storage reservoir in western Maryland.

Specifically, Texas Eastern is seeking to expand the maximum certificated capacity of its storage facility in Accident, MD, to 64 Bcf from 62 Bcf, and to increase the working gas capacity to 18.3 Bcf from 15.3 Bcf, the pipeline said in its application.[CP05-392]. As a result of the planned upgrades, the pipeline said it also expects to improve on the facility's current maximum deliverability rate of 400 MMcf/d.

Texas Eastern said while it plans to expand the facilities over the next two years, 2006 and 2007, it believes that most of the new working gas capacity (2.25 Bcf of the total 3 Bcf) can be available in 2006.

The so-called Accident Storage Enhancement Project "will provide Texas Eastern with additional storage capacity that is critical to managing its pipeline system, and will improve Texas Eastern's ability to minimize constraints imposed on its shippers through operational flow orders (OFOs) or other scheduling procedures that limit the ability of shippers to inject into and withdraw gas from Texas Eastern storage," the Duke Energy pipeline said.

The Accident storage site, located in Garrett County (the westernmost county in Maryland), is "critical" to the operational reliability of the Texas Eastern system, the pipeline noted. It is situated where the Texas Eastern pipeline system makes the transition from being primarily transportation and supply to transportation and market functionality.

Duke Energy Gas Transmission, of which Texas Eastern is a wholly-owned company, owns the storage field near the town of Accident, and partially owns the Pennsylvania fields near Oakford (50%) and Leidy (25%). The depleted reservoirs in the three towns allow for "one turn" per year (an injection and withdrawal cycle that takes 12 months), the company said.

Texas Eastern's pipeline system extends 9,088 miles from Texas to the northeastern United States, carrying 5.9 Bcf/d of natural gas to high-demand markets, and has 75.1 Bcf of gas storage.

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