Scana Plans Pipeline to Compete with Palmetto
Scana's South Carolina Pipeline Corp. announced Wednesday it
plans to build an interstate pipeline running from South Carolina
to North Carolina, and in the process held no punches on promoting
its pipeline over the proposed Carolina Light and Power
(CP&L)/Sonat Palmetto Pipeline project. Scana did not release
details of its proposal, but did say formal descriptions will be
announced in the coming weeks.
"Our interstate pipeline project is a superior alternative to
the proposed Palmetto Pipeline and will continue South Carolina
Pipeline's long-established, responsible support for economic
development in South Carolina while providing a second source of
gas service into North Carolina," said Berry Gibbes, president of
South Carolina Pipeline.
The announcement comes two days after the Palmetto Pipeline
announced an open season for potential customers seeking service
from the pipeline for at least 20-year terms (See Daily GPI, April
13). Gibbes said the South Carolina proposal will give shippers a
more flexible and reasonably priced alternative before Palmetto's
open season expires on May 31.
"We recommend that any gas shipper who may be considering
subscribing to firm capacity on the proposed Palmetto Pipeline
Project wait to compare our alternative interstate pipeline before
being locked into a more costly service for up to 20 years," Gibbes
CP&L was not surprised by Scana's comments. "This is Scana's
first experience with competition in this environment," said
CP&L spokesman Mike Hughes. "The fact that there has been no
competition in this market is being proved by the considerable
interest we have gotten during the first days of Palmetto's open
season. Additionally, CP&L will account for a large portion of
Palmetto's capacity, maybe as much as half of its initial capacity.
That is a reason to build a pipeline. There is still a considerable
question as to what will make Scana's project economically viable."
South Carolina Pipeline currently operates a 1,900-mile
intrastate pipeline transmission system that supplies gas to
customers throughout much of South Carolina. It has direct
connections with both the Transco and Sonat systems. Over the past
three years, the company said it spent $50 million in system
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