Maritimes & Northeast Pipeline is proposing to increase the capacity of the U.S. portion of its pipeline system to transport new gas supplies from EnCana Corp.'s planned Deep Panuke project, located off the coast of Nova Scotia, to markets in Atlantic Canada and the Northeast United States, the company said last week.

Following a successful open season for its Phase V Project (see NGI, Jan. 7, 2008), Maritimes has executed a commercial agreement with a subsidiary of EnCana to transport up to 170,000 Dth/d year-round, and an additional 30,000 Dth/d during the winter.

"With direct access to the Northeast, the Maritimes system is the ideal route to bring new volumes of offshore supply to markets where demand continues to grow," said Maritimes President Tina Faraca.

Phase V would increase the capacity of the approximately 330-mile U.S. portion of the Maritimes system through the installation of additional compression at existing stations and a short length of pipeline loop within an existing corridor. Maritimes said it expects to place the approximately $240 million project in service in November 2010.

Deep Panuke was sanctioned for development by EnCana's board of directors in October 2007 and is proceeding to construction, with first gas expected in 2010. In November EnCana named an operator for its mobile production unit. Produced gas from Deep Panuke is to come ashore at Goldboro, NS, via subsea pipeline and be carried to market on Maritimes (see NGI, Nov. 12, 2007).

Maritimes Phase IV construction began in September (see NGI, Sept. 10, 2007). Maritimes will transport regasified liquefied natural gas (LNG) from the Canaport LNG receiving and regasification terminal currently being constructed in Saint John, NB. Canaport LNG is a limited partnership of subsidiaries of Repsol YPF and Irving Oil Ltd. Repsol Energy Canada has contracted for 100% of Canaport LNG's capacity. The terminal is expected to begin operation in the fourth quarter of 2008.

Maritimes is owned by affiliates of Spectra Energy, Emera Inc. and ExxonMobil Corp. and is headquartered in Halifax, NS, with an additional office in Waltham, MA.

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