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Dominion Seeks OK for Two Appalachia-Sourced NatGas Pipeline Projects

Dominion has asked federal regulators to OK two natural gas pipeline projects -- one to serve Upstate New York, the other for West Virginia -- that would rely on home-based supply from the Appalachian Basin.

The New Market project in Upstate New York has been on the to-do list since last fall (see Daily GPIMay 5). It would provide 112,000 Dth/d of firm transportation service, with more than 33,000 hp added to Dominion Transmission's existing system. The Clarington project in West Virginia is designed to carry 250,000 Dth/d; about 16,000 hp would be added to existing stations in West Virginia and Ohio.

Applications for certificates of public convenience and necessity were filed with FERC for the two projects, expected to cost a total of $235 million.

"Natural gas produced from the Marcellus and Utica shales in the Appalachian region of West Virginia and Ohio is expected to continue its strong and rapid growth," said Dominion Energy President Diane Leopold. "Additional firm transportation capacity for new natural gas supplies for both projects also will alleviate the possibility of shortages by providing more gas to market."

The Appalachia consuming region on Jan. 6 set a peak electricity demand of 19,730 MW, an increase of more than 9% above the previous record set in 2007 (see Daily GPIJan. 7). "That same day, gas transmission also set a new peak with a one-hour sendout rate equal to 7.65 Bcf/d," Dominion CEO Tom Farrell said last month during a conference call. "Even higher winter peak electric demand was set on Jan. 30, at 19,785 MW."

Executive Vice President Paul Koonce said last month that following the brutal winter, he thought there would be "some movement back" to local distribution company customers that would place "a premium on reliability, as they should."

New Market would improve access for two National Grid subsidiaries, Niagara Mohawk and Brooklyn Union. If approved by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission by April 2015, the project might begin service in November 2016.

Two compressor stations with 11,000 hp each are to be built in Madison County, NY, and Chemung County, NY. Additional compression would be added to the Brookmans Corners Station in Montgomery County, NY, with upgrades at the Borger, Utica and the Brookmans Corners stations.

If the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) were to issue the Clarington certificate in May 2015, the project also could be in service in November 2016.

Clarington's two new compressors totaling 10,000 hp are to be built at the existing Mullett Compressor Station in Monroe County, OH. About 6,000 hp also would be added to the existing Burch Ridge Compressor Station in Marshall County, WV. An interconnection with CNX Gas Co. near Lightburn, WV would receive gas and deliver it to Texas Eastern Transmission and Rockies Express Pipeline in Monroe County.

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