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Northern Border Plans Powder River-North Dakota Connection

Northern Border Pipeline Co. subsidiary Bison Pipeline LLC is holding a binding open season for firm capacity on a proposed pipeline from the Powder River Basin supply area to an interconnect in Morton County, ND.

Plans for the Bison Pipeline Project call for a 24-inch diameter pipeline extending approximately 289 miles from gathering facilities of Fort Union Gas Gathering LLC and Bighorn Gas Gathering LLC near Dead Horse, WY, to a terminus near Northern Border's Compressor Station No. 6 in Morton County. Bison's initial capacity is anticipated to be approximately 400 MMcf/d with a maximum capacity of 660 MMcf/d. Ultimate capacity will be determined by the level of binding shipper commitments. The pipeline's projected in-service date is Nov. 15, 2010.

"Bison will present Rockies natural gas producers, who have rapidly growing natural gas supplies, with a new pipeline outlet providing market diversity and competitive netbacks. Bison will be the shortest path to a major pipeline with available downstream capacity to robust Midwest and Chicago markets," said Northern Border Vice President Paul F. Miller. "Bison will also offer Northern Border's customers and markets greater supply diversity through direct access to growing Rockies supply."

The Bison open season is scheduled to close on May 16. Open season documents are available on Northern Border's website,

Bison is the latest in a series of proposals for new infrastructure to move Rocky Mountain gas to out-of-region markets, including Spectra Energy's Texas Eastern Transmission pipeline application to build its proposed Northern Bridge project to transport 150 MMcf/d to Northeast markets (see related story); Alliance Pipeline Inc. and Questar Overthrust Pipeline's agreement to develop the Rockies Alliance Pipeline, which would extend from Wamsutter, WY, to the Minnesota/Canadian border at the Emerson trading hub (see NGI, March 31); Williams and TransCanada Corp.'s announcement that they will evaluate the joint development of the east-to-west Sunstone Pipeline (see NGI, March 17); and El Paso Corp.'s binding open season for its proposed Ruby Pipeline LLC, a 1.2 Bcf/d that would transport gas from the Rockies to the West Coast (see NGI, Feb. 25).

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