Shippers Protest Tetco's New Hourly Service
Texas Eastern Transmission (TETCO) has come up with a novel way
of solving its capacity turnback problem with a service providing
firm hourly flexibility, but customers, particularly New England
LDCs, aren't buying it.
The tariff modification Texas Eastern proposes would allow
shippers under Rate Schedules CDS, FT-1, SCT and SS-1 to take up to
110% of 1/24th of their scheduled quantities for six hours on any
day. Providing this ability to vary takes on an hourly basis during
the day will mitigate the issuance of OFOs requiring uniform hourly
takes this winter, Texas Eastern says. (RP00-543) The service has
been proposed on an experimental, interim basis, to be evaluated in
To provide this flexibility TETCO would buy back from itself
130,000 Dth/d of spare capacity on its system to, in effect,
provide an on-system storage service. In order to pay for the
capacity the pipeline would eliminate the storage cost credit due
other customers under Rate Schedules SS-1, FSS-1, SS and X-28.
"Texas Eastern is trying to recover $6.1 million in costs
associated with unsubscribed capacity from its customers through
elimination of the storage cost credit - even though the shippers
receiving the credit are not the same shippers that will receive
the hourly flexibility," New England LDCs said in a protest filed
at FERC Sept. 27. The New England shippers said they would lose
$1.5 million per year in storage cost credits and receive no
benefits from the new service.
Although Texas Eastern said the proposal had been made at the
request of its customers, the LDCs said they had objected to the
plan when it was originally proposed last Spring, and the Process
Gas Consumers said they had never seen it. PGC said the service
constitutes a tariff change, which should be considered in the
pipeline's Order 637 compliance filing. The industrial users point
out that since TETCO's current hourly flow provisions to not
explicitly state a shipper's hourly flow rights, the new service
would effectively restrict those rights and therefore constitutes a
degradation of service.
PGC also said it does not appear the service will eliminate the
potential for a repeat of the numerous OFOs that TETCO issued last
January, "rather it would provide additional flexibility for a
certain class of shippers in the event TETCO calls an OFO."
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