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Reliant Gets OK for Flexible Nominations

Reliant Gets OK for Flexible Nominations

FERC last week conditionally approved Reliant Energy Gas Transmission's proposal to allow shippers on its system to make more liberal nominations.

The order, which was voted out Wednesday, would allow Reliant shippers to submit nominations any time of the day to be effective at the top of each hour, provided the nominations are made at least 60 minutes in advance. The move towards hourly nominations reflects the increasingly close alliance between the natural gas and power generation markets, Reliant said.

To implement the flexible proposal, Reliant sought a waiver of the Gas Industry Standards Board's (GISB) rules with respect to nomination timelines and cycles. But the Commission said this wasn't necessary since Reliant's proposal "satisfies and goes beyond" the existing GISB standards for pipeline nominations.

The GISB standards represent minimum requirements for pipelines, the FERC order noted. "Pipelines may go beyond these minimum requirements and.offer more nomination opportunities than those required by GISB. However, this does not require or justify a waiver."

FERC granted Reliant a "limited waiver" of GISB bumping standards enabling Reliant firm shippers to bump interruptible shippers consistent with the hourly nomination cycle. However, it rejected the pipeline's request for bumping IT shippers after 5 p.m. on the day of gas flow. Moreover, it refused to waive the GISB rule requiring bumping that affects multiple pipelines to occur at "grid-wide synchronization times only."

FERC "finds that waiver of this standard could create imbalances on other pipeline systems and adversely impact synchronization of pipeline operations across the grid. Therefore, while Reliant may bump interruptible shippers on its own system, it may not bump such shippers outside of the GISB timeline if such bumping affects transactions on other pipelines," the order said.

The Commission also rejected Reliant's request to remove the currently effective GISB nomination timeline from its tariff. "Since Reliant's system interfaces with those of other pipelines, it is important that shippers moving gas across Reliant's system have a mechanism in place to coordinate with adjacent pipeline systems."

Susan Parker

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