A subsidiary of EmKey Energy LLC has acquired the rights to a 75-mile right-of-way (ROW) through three counties in New York’s Southern Tier, in the heart of the state’s portions of the Marcellus and Utica shales.

Dennis Holbrook, executive vice president of Norse Energy Corp. ASA, said Erie, PA-based EmKey Gathering LLC purchased the ROW from Norse on Nov. 16, with plans to build a 16- to 24-inch diameter pipeline to transport natural gas to market.

“The ROW, as it exists right now, has the potential to go into three different interstates when the pipeline is constructed,” Holbrook told NGI’s Shale Daily on Monday. Those interstate pipelines are the Millennium Pipeline, Dominion Transmission Inc. (DTI), and New York State Electric & Gas Corp. (NYSEG).

Holbrook added that EmKey had the potential to tie into a fourth interstate, Tennessee Gas Pipeline, “right at the point where the Tennessee and Dominion lines intersect,” he said.

The proposed pipeline would begin in Madison County and traverse Chenango County before terminating at the Millennium in Broome County. According to several media reports, EmKey officials have started contacted local landowners along the ROW, and advising them of when construction would begin.

“We’re in the very preliminary process right now,” EmKey General Manager Stephen Keyes told the Ithaca Journal on Monday. “Right now we’re in the process of reviewing all the ROWs that we have to make sure that we have everything in order, and the next steps will be to go out and survey the pipeline route and then do our environmental work and our archeological studies.”

Norse sold EmKey its operated production and other assets in New York to EmKey in March for $37 million (see Shale Daily, March 19). As part of that deal, EmKey committed to constructing a pipeline capable of transporting a minimum of 90,000 Mcf/d, once Norse nominates for firm transportation.

EmKey is a privately owned company led and partially owned by Oivind Risberg, a current Norse board member and former Norse Energy CEO. Risberg also formed Appalachian Transmission and Marketing LLC, which purchased midstream assets from Norse in early 2011.