FERC Wednesday granted Liberty Gas Storage LLC a three-year extension of the deadline to complete the construction and place in operation an expansion of its storage facilities.

The expansion facilities, which are to be sited in Calcasieu and Cameron Parishes, LA, were supposed to be completed within 18 months of the June 2009 approval of the project (by December 2010). But Liberty Gas Storage, which is jointly owned by Sempra Energy and ProLiance Transportation and Storage, said it doubted it would make the deadline, and asked for an extension until December 2013.

"Liberty states that the requested extension will provide Liberty with sufficient time and flexibility to contract with potential customers and arrange financing upon reasonable terms. Liberty states that this requested extension is consistent with extensions that the Commission has recently granted to other natural gas storage projects under similar circumstances," the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) order said [CP08-454].

The expansion project calls for the addition of four high-deliverability natural gas storage caverns -- three of which would be converted from existing salt caverns and one that would be newly developed -- as well as associated pipeline facilities.

Upon conversion, Liberty said the three existing caverns would store 15.75 Bcf of natural gas, of which 12.40 Bcf would be working gas and 3.35 Bcf would be base gas. The newly developed cavern would storage approximately 8.25 Bcf of natural gas, of which 6.50 Bcf would be working gas and 1.75 Bcf of base gas, according to the company.

In 2007 Sempra and ProLiance placed into service the first of the Liberty Gas Storage facilities, which provide 17 Bcf of high-deliverability storage services to shippers on several pipelines (see Daily GPI, Feb. 14, 2007).

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