El Paso Corp. late Tuesday applied with the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission to construct and operate Ruby Pipeline, which would carry Rocky Mountain natural gas supplies from Wyoming to southeast Oregon to connect to existing north-south interstate pipelines.

Ruby is expected to have an initial design capacity of up to 1.5 Bcf/d. The proposed 675-mile, 42-inch diameter interstate project would pipe gas from Rockies basins to Nevada, California and Pacific Northwest markets. El Paso secured more than 1.1 Bcf/d in binding 10- to 15-year contract commitments last June (see Daily GPI, June 26, 2008).

“Additional capacity out of the Rockies is urgently needed, and Ruby is the right solution to help end-users and producers,” said Jim Cleary, president of El Paso’s Western Pipelines. “We have completed the environmental, archaeological and subsurface assessments for our proposed route and are on track to be in service in March 2011, pending FERC approval.”

In November California regulators approved Pacific Gas and Electric Co.’s 15-year, 375,000 Dth/d transportation contract on the proposed pipe (see Daily GPI, Nov. 7, 2008). The utility initially would take 250,000 Dth/d beginning July 1, 2011 through Oct. 31, 2011. Beginning Nov. 1, 2011, the full gas contract capacity would go into effect. Anadarko Petroleum Corp. officials last August also indicated that they would make a binding commitment to El Paso for Ruby Pipeline (see Daily GPI, Aug. 6, 2008).

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