FERC OKs Downsizing, Phasing of Transco Expansion in Southeast

The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission has voted out an order to downsize and phase the construction of an already-certificated expansion of Transcontinental Gas Pipe Line Corp.'s mainline pipeline system in the Southeast region.

Transco asked the Commission to amend a certificate, which the agency issued on Feb. 14, for its so-called Momentum pipe looping and compression project in Mississippi, Alabama, Georgia and North Carolina, after two shippers pulled out of the expansion. The shippers, who had subscribed to 90,000 Dth/d of project capacity, were Calpine Energy Services LP and Gen Power Andersen LLC.

Two other shippers, Municipal Electric Authority of Georgia and United Cities Gas Co., have stepped in as replacement shippers, but they have committed to only 54,000 Dth/d of firm service, and they do not need the service until May 1, 2004.

As a result, the capacity to be provided by the Momentum project will be 322,898 Dth/d instead of the originally proposed 358,898 Dth/d, according to Transco. In addition, FERC agreed to allow Transco to build the project in two phases: Phase I facilities are to include 268,898 Dth/d of capacity, and will go into service on May 1, 2003; and Phase II facilities will supply an additional 54,000 Dth/d of capacity, with service starting on May 1, 2004.

The $189 million project will consist of 49.98 miles of 42- and 48-inch diameter pipeline loop (14 miles fewer than the original project), as well as the addition of 45,000 horsepower of compression at four existing compressor stations in Alabama, Georgia and North Carolina.

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