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Gulfstream Places Phase II System Extension into Operation

After receiving FERC approval Gulfstream Natural Gas System last Tuesday placed its Phase II pipeline facilities in Florida into service, extending the reach of the pipeline by 110 more miles across the Sunshine State and providing 350 MMcf/d of additional long-term firm transportation service.

Specifically, the new 30-inch diameter pipeline extends the Gulfstream system from Polk County in central Florida to the state's eastern coast and to Florida Power & Light's (FPL) Martin generation facility in Martin County. Gulfstream now has the ability to serve customers on Florida's east and west coasts as well as the interior of the peninsula.

The facilities lengthen the pipeline to 691 miles, but the capacity of the Gulfstream system remains at 1.1 Bcf/d, according to Chris Stockton, a spokesman for Gulfstream, a joint venture of Duke Energy and Williams.

The Gulfstream system begins in Mobile, AL, crosses the Gulf of Mexico, and then comes ashore near Tampa, FL, where it runs through three counties to Central Florida and now enters the eastern part of the state. Gulfstream, which went into service in June 2002, is the largest pipeline in the Gulf and the first new gas pipeline to be built in Florida in more than 40 years.

The Phase II facilities are part of a 23-year agreement for Gulfstream to provide up to 350 MMcf/d of natural gas transportation to serve FPL's Martin and Manatee power plant operations (see NGI, Oct. 13, 2003). When the service for FPL Martin begins later this year, the pipeline will be more than two-thirds subscribed on a firm basis, according to Gulfstream.

"With this extension in place, we look forward to continuing to expand our transportation service to support Florida's growing need for natural gas," said Brad Reese, Gulfstream vice president.

"Gulfstream has been talking with the market about a potential Phase III project, but there's nothing definitive at this time," Stockton told NGI.

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