Energen Resources Corp., the oil and gas subsidiary of EnergenCorp., reported it signed a definitive agreement to acquire thestock of Total Minatome Corp. for $110 million, plus $22 million inlegal and financial obligations. For its investment, EnergenResources will gain an estimated 200 billion cubic feet equivalent(Bcfe) of proved domestic oil and natural gas reserves. Immediatelyupon closing the transaction on Oct.15, Energen Resources (formerlyTaurus Exploration Inc.) plans to sell a 31% undivided interest inTotal Minatome’s assets to Westport Oil and Gas Co. Inc.
A wholly owned subsidiary of Potomac Electric Power Co. (Pepco)has purchased the assets and operations of a Maryland-based gasretail marketing firm for an undisclosed amount. The transactiongives Pepco through its subsidiary, Pepco Services, the capabilityto offer for the first time natural gas to its commercial,institutional and industrial customers. Gaslantic Corp., which islocated in Forest Hill, MD, provides strategic fuel management tolarge gas users in the eastern half of the United States, helpingcustomers to obtain the best fuel source, transportation andprices. The company, which had revenues of $50 million in 1997,will operate as a new division of Pepco Services. “This acquisitionstrengthens our product and service capabilities, particularly aswe plan to open an office soon in Pennsylvania to sell both gas andelectricity,” said Pepco Services President Ed Mayberry. Theacquisition, the utility said, will build on Pepco’s investment inthe Cove Point liquefied natural gas facilities, a joint venturewith Columbia Energy Group.
Atlanta-based Southern Co. has joined a collaborative effort of20 companies to create the largest survey of business energy use.Southern, Regional Economic Research (RER), Opinion Dynamics Corp.and the Gas Research Institute plan to survey more than 10,000businesses across the U.S. to obtain detailed information on energyusage as well as attitudes and behavior of energy buyers. Thedatabase and analysis system, called the National Business EnergyDataMart, will be packaged with software that provides detailedanalysis down to the individual customer level. Results areexpected to be available next February. Dun and Bradstreet willassist the sample design effort by providing access to itsdatabase. The database of survey results with a data analysissystem is being offered at a $5,000 discount for those thatpurchase before the end of the year. To sign up, contact RER at800/755-9585 or by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The sponsors of Canadian-bound Vector Pipeline and TristatePipeline have been discussing the possibility of combining the twoprojects, but so far no agreement has been reached, according to aspokesman for one of the sponsors. “We are interested in talkingwith Vector to see if some possibility of merger or consolidationcan be reached. We have had talks periodically off and on, but sofar there has not been any agreement,” said Kelly Farr, a spokesmanfor CMS Energy, a sponsor in the Tristate project along withWestcoast. The proposed Tristate project would transport about 700MMcf/d over 350 miles from the Chicago hub in Joliet, IL, to UnionGas’s storage facilities in Dawn, ON. The sponsors plan to file anapplication at FERC in October. The competing Vector Pipeline,which is backed by MCN Corp., proposes to cover much of the sameground. MCN is parent of Michigan Consolidated Gas.
PP&L Global Inc., a subsidiary of PP&L Resources Inc.,plans to build a gas-fired power plant (the Griffith EnergyProject) near Kingman, AZ, with nominal base load capacity of 520MW and a maximum output capability of 650 MW. “As the generation ofelectricity is deregulated in the United States, PP&L Global isseeking to develop and acquire power plants in key areas of thecountry,” said Robert D. Fagan, president of PP&L Global. “TheGriffith Energy Project site is a excellent location, in a regionwith significant growth in demand for electricity. In addition, theproject should improve electricity transmission capability in theKingman and Lake Havasu City region.” A spokesman said gas supply,which has not yet been contracted for, could move on Transwesternor El Paso. The plant would burn 80,000 MMBtu/d. The ArizonaCorporation Commission’s Siting Committee on Monday gave unanimousapproval to PP&L Global’s plans. The company is working on anenvironmental impact statement and air-quality permits.
The Massachusetts Department of Telecommunications and Energyapproved the merger of Essex County Gas and Eastern Enterprises,parent of Boston Gas, yesterday. The merger calls for a 10-yearfreeze of base rates and a 5% reduction in the cost of gas. As aresult, customers are expected to save $56 million over the next 10years.
Subsidiaries of Consolidated Natural Gas and El Paso Energy havepurchased two gas pipelines in Western Australia from the BrokenHill Pty Co. Ltd (BHP) for A$129 million (US$75 million). Thepurchase includes the 134-mile Pilbara line that serves BHP’s ironplant in Port Hedland, and a 15-mile extension to productionfacilities in Burrup. The Burrup Extension is expected to open inDecember.
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