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REX Seeks to Expand Meeker-to-Cheyenne Hub Segment

Rockies Express Pipeline (REX) has filed an application at FERC for compressor additions to expand capacity between Meeker Hub and Cheyenne Hub in Colorado on the REX/Entrega leg of the 1,679-mile west-to-east system.

The proposed Meeker-to-Cheyenne expansion would accommodate EnCana Marketing USA Inc.'s contractual ramp-up in rights to increase its capacity on only the 327-mile REX/Entrega portion of the pipeline, which provides takeaway capacity out of supply basins in Colorado and Wyoming to the Cheyenne Hub in Weld County, CO. EnCana Marketing's contractual ramp-up rights do not apply to pipeline facilities already built for the REX-West leg or the under-construction REX-East segment.

The project would increase the capacity from Meeker Hub in Rio Blanco County, CO, to Wamsutter Hub in Sweetwater County, WY, by 200,000 MMcf/d to 1.3 Bcf/d, and the capacity from Wamsutter to Cheyenne Hub would ramp up, upon completion of the REX-East project facility later this year, to 2 Bcf/d from 1.8 Bcf/d, according to REX pipeline.

The expansion would permit REX to transport on a firm basis an additional 200,000 Dth/d from Meeker Hub northward to Wamsutter Hub on behalf of Wyoming Interstate Co. and 200,000 Dth/d from Wamsutter eastward to Cheyenne Hub on behalf of EnCana Marketing, the application said [CP09-58].

The expansion calls for the construction of a 20,500 ISO-rated hp gas-powered compressor unit at the pipeline's Big Hole Compressor Station, and a 17,500 ISO-rated hp electric-powered compressor unit and associated facilities at its Arlington Compressor Station.

REX has called on the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission to approve the Meeker-to-Cheyenne expansion by July 16 of this year so that the facilities can be placed in service by April 1, 2010.

The massive REX pipeline consists of three sections: REX/Entrega, REX-West and REX-East. The REX/Entrega leg and REX-West, a 713-mile, 42-inch diameter pipeline that extends from Cheyenne Hub to Audrain County, MO, are already in operation. Now under construction is the REX-East leg, a 638-mile, 42-inch diameter pipeline that will extend from an interconnection with the eastern terminus of REX-West in Audrain County through Illinois and Indiana, terminating at an interconnection with three pipelines at Clarington Hub in Monroe County, OH.

Service on REX-East to Lebanon, OH, is expected to begin June 15 with a capacity of 1.6 Bcf/d, and the line is due to be fully in service to Clarington, OH, by Nov. 1 with a capacity of 1.8 Bcf/d, REX said (see NGI, Oct. 13, 2008).

REX is a joint venture of Kinder Morgan Energy Partners LP, Sempra Pipelines and Storage and ConocoPhillips.

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