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Dispute Resolution Meeting Slated With Midla and Customers Over Proposed Pipeline Abandonment

An ongoing battle between American Midstream (Midla) Partners and its customers, including Atmos Energy Corp., over Midla’s petition to abandon its 88-year-old jurisdictional natural gas pipeline will be the subject of meetings May 29 and 30 conducted by FERC’s director of the Dispute Resolution Division (DRD).

Denver-based American Midstream announced plans earlier this year to abandon the Midla system after negotiations with customers over repairs and reconstruction of the pipeline broke down and the company didn't receive any interest to an open season (see Daily GPI, March 13). It filed for abandonment March 28 [No. CP14-125-000]. Customers protested the abandonment and Atmos filed a complaint with the Commission. Midla claims the line is unsafe without repairs and customers have refused to sign up for capacity under the rates it has proposed to fix the pipeline.

The 370-mile Midla pipeline system was built in 1926, traverses Louisiana and Mississippi, and in the early to mid-1970s carried up to 300 MMcf/d. The case has raised complaints and actions from both state and federal politicians (see Daily GPI, April 7).

Midla and Atmos requested the meeting with DRD about alternative dispute resolution (ADR) of the issues. The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission announcement Thursday said DRD will assist the parties in better identifying and clarifying the issues and in fostering negotiations among the parties to determine whether agreement using ADR can be achieved.

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