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EGNB Awards WPS Transportation Contract

EGNB Awards WPS Transportation Contract

Enbridge Gas New Brunswick (EGNB) has entered into a three year deal whereby Green Bay, WI,-based WPS Energy Services will assume control of EGNB's approximate 11 MMcf/d transportation capacity on Maritimes & Northeast Pipeline. EGNB had to unload the capacity because as the distributor it could not also sell gas.

Currently, a new greenfield distribution system is being built in New Brunswick, which will expose residents to natural gas for the first time. EGNB won the rights for distribution in the Province in fall of 1999, right after the government set up the gas industry structure.

"When the government set up the industry here, it was set up as a totally unbundled industry so that us as the gas distributor could not sell natural gas," said EGNB spokesman Mark Butler. "In order to have Maritimes & Northeast pipeline build the facilities to connect into our distribution system, they needed a firm transportation agreement signed to ensure they received their tolls. We were the only ones in a position to make that commitment, so we had to sign the firm service agreement for transportation even though we knew we were not actually going to be able to use it."

EGNB awarded WPS the contract over other industry participants due to its "superior proposal" as well as its interest in the New Brunswick marketplace, EGNB said. WPS has already filed its application with the New Brunswick Board of Commissioners of Public Utilities for gas marketer certification and expects to be ready to deliver gas by November.

Butler said he believed Irving Oil and Engage Canada had both expressed interest in applying to become certified marketers as well.

"With the transportation capacity, WPS Energy Services will provide competitive physical gas supply commodity and other services to end-use customers and natural gas marketers in New Brunswick," EGNB stated.

EGNB is a partnership between Enbridge Inc., and a group of local New Brunswick investors.

Alex Steis

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