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Southern Seeks Expansion Approval at FERC

Southern Seeks Expansion Approval at FERC

El Paso Energy's Southern Natural Gas pipeline last week filed an application at FERC seeking to expand its South Main system by about 336 MMcf/d to serve utility power plants in North Carolina and other southeastern markets.

The proposed South System Expansion calls for the construction of about 73 miles of pipeline looping and the addition of more than 34,000 horsepower of compression along Southern Natural's system in Mississippi and Georgia for an estimated cost of $147 million, said spokesman Mel Scott. The expansion, for which the pipeline is seeking rolled-in treatment from FERC, has a targeted in-service date of June 2002.

The entire capacity of the project has been subscribed under 15-year firm transportation agreements with Southern Company, a major power generation producer; Scana Corp.'s South Carolina Pipeline Corp.; and the city of LaGrange, GA.

Southern Natural's proposed expansion would tie in with South Carolina Pipeline's plans to extend its system by 300 miles to serve three new 200 MW power plants, three ethanol production facilities and a new fiber optic cable in North Carolina.

"We have served an increasing number of gas-fired peaking plants over the past few summers, but this expansion will serve the first significant baseload power plants on Southern Natural that will run year-round," said Southern Natural President Jim Yardley. The project represents a "significant growth opportunity" for Southern Natural in the southeastern power generation market, he noted.

Susan Parker

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