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REX Tells FERC 1,700-Mile Pipeline Is Completed

Rockies Express Pipeline LLC (REX) last Thursday asked FERC for authorization to begin service on its REX-East leg between the Lebanon Hub meter station and the Clarington Hub meter station by the end of this week, thereby completing the REX-East project and the entire 1,678-mile pipeline, which links Rocky Mountain natural gas with markets in the Midwest and East.

Subject to authorization from the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC), completion of tie-ins at the horizontal direction drill and final commissioning, "Rockies Express expects to be in service up to and including Clarington at full primary point contractual quantities for gas day Thursday, Nov. 12. If there is a change in the service date, the new date will be updated in a future filing," the REX pipeline said.

"This request [to the Commission] includes in-service authority for all pipeline facilities east of the Lebanon Hub to the REX-East endpoint at the Clarington Hub, including all mainline pipeline facilities between [Mile Posts] 444 and 639.1 and six meter stations [with] Columbia Gas, Tennessee Gas, Dominion Gas Transmission (MP 612.3), Dominion Gas Transmission (Clarington Hub), Dominion East Ohio (Clarington Hub) and Texas Eastern (Clarington Hub)," as well as two compressor stations in Ohio -- Hamilton Compressor Station and Chandlersville Compressor Station [CP07-208].

"Rockies Express submits that approval of this request is in the public interest where it will permit numerous markets in the Midwest and East -- all of [which] have anticipated the completion of this section of the REX-East project by November 2009 -- to access competitive Rocky Mountain gas supplies for their supply portfolios for the 2009-2010 heating season," said REX President R. Douglas Walker.

REX-East -- the final leg of the mammoth REX system -- is a 638-mile, 42-inch diameter pipeline that extends from Audrain County, MO, to the Clarington Hub in Monroe County, OH. REX-East, which FERC approved for construction in mid-2008, will have the capability to deliver 1.8 Bcf/d while providing access to an additional 16 interstate and intrastate pipelines through 20 interconnection points (see NGI, June 2, 2008). Virtually all of the capacity on the pipeline has been contracted, according to REX.

In late June REX began service on the portion of the REX-East leg from Audrain County to the Lebanon Hub in Warren County, OH, with capacity up to 1.6 Bcf/d (see NGI, July 6).

The pipeline system consists of two other legs -- REX/Entrega and REX-West. The entire REX/Entrega portion went into service in early 2008, while the entire REX-West segment began operation in May 2008 (see NGI, May 26, 2008; Jan. 7, 2008).

REX is a joint venture of Kinder Morgan Energy Partners LP; Sempra Pipelines and Storage, a unit of Sempra Energy; and ConocoPhillips and is one of the largest natural gas pipelines to be constructed in North America.

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