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Questar Gets OK to Extend Southern Transmission System

FERC on Wednesday approved Questar Pipeline Co.'s request to further extend its southern transmission system, giving shippers access to natural gas supplies in the Uintah Basin of Utah.

Questar Pipeline's southern transmission system includes the existing ML (Main Line) 104 extension, which comprises about 151 miles of 24-inch diameter pipeline. The certificate order gives Questar Pipeline the go-ahead to extend the ML 104 line by another 24.6 miles eastward from Green River to Questar's existing Fidlar Compressor Station, essentially completing a loop of the existing ML 40 line between Green River and Fidlar, so shippers can take advantage of the gas supplies in the Uintah Basin.

The ML 104 extension would add 160,000 Dth/d of incremental capacity, with 144,000 Dth/d already subscribed under firm agreements, said Questar Pipeline, a subsidiary of Salt Lake City-based Questar Corp.

Questar said it made a new agreement with QEP Marketing Co. for 20,000 Dth/d, while three other shippers -- Anadarko Energy Services Co., EOG Resources Inc. and El Paso Marketing LP -- extended their firm transportation agreements for a total of 94,000 Dth/d. A fifth company, Questar Gas Co., chose to continue as a shipper but at a reduced capacity -- 30,000 Dth/d from its existing 50,000 Dth/d.

Since 2001 the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission has issued several orders -- the latest one being the fourth -- authorizing the construction of the ML 104 extension in stages. Construction is expected to begin in June, with completion targeted by Nov. 1.

The Commission granted Questar Pipeline's request for a predetermination that it may roll the costs of the ML 104 extension project, which the pipeline estimated at $46.1 million, into its existing rates in a future Section 4 rate case.

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