MoGas Pipeline LLC is holding a nonbinding open season through mid-December to test support in firm transportation capacity on its interstate natural gas pipeline in Missouri and Illinois.

“MoGas is considering an expansion of the capacity of its natural gas pipeline system to approximately 200,000 Dth/d from its current capacity of 125,000 Dth/d,” the company said.

With sufficient support, the expansion cold to be operational by late 2020. Interest from interested customers is due by Dec. 13, MoGas said on Friday.

“We are conducting this open season to solicit shipper interest for firm transportation service to the MoGas MRT interconnect in the east, as well as delivery points in the western portion of our system,” said MoGas President Rick Kreul.

“Depending on interest, MoGas may install a parallel pipeline, or ‘looping,’ in the northwestern part of our system to provide up to 75,000 Dth/d of additional capacity” from the Rockies Express Pipeline LLC (REX) and Panhandle Eastern Pipe Line Co. LP (PEPL) interconnections.

“We are also open to discussions on further expansions of capacity at similar rates if shippers show interest.”

MoGas’s roughly 263-mile interstate pipeline system serves utilities in the St. Louis area and central Missouri, and it has pipeline receipt and delivery interconnects with REX, PEPL and  Enable Mississippi River Transmission LLC (MRT).

MoGas, a subsidiary of CorEnergy Infrastructure Trust Inc., is said to be the only source of natural gas for the majority of the customers it serves.

MoGas supplies gas to the St. Louis area, as well as 17 smaller Missouri utilities, municipalities, and industrial end-users.

The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission in September approved the settlement of a rate case filed by MoGas in May 2018, through which it sought a base rate increase.

The proposed hike was meant to offset increased capital and operating expenditures, as well as mitigate “the substantial decrease in volumes due to the loss of a firm transportation contract with a St. Louis natural gas marketing entity,” and mitigate the decrease in revenue from its largest customer, Spire Missouri East. It also was meant to reflect “changes in the corporate income tax rate associated with the 2017 Tax Cuts and Jobs Act.”

The settlement offsets the “majority of revenue lost from a March 2017 agreement between MoGas and its largest customer,” CorEnergy said in its 3Q2019 earnings presentation. “This confirms that the new rates equate to an annual revenue of approximately $14.8 million as disclosed in the company’s filings for the second quarter of 2019,” MoGas said in August.

In related news, Spire Inc. is seeking FERC approval to place its 400,000 Dth/d Spire STL pipeline into service.

The 59-mile, 24-inch diameter pipe would tap into REX to serve the St. Louis market.