Alliance Pipeline Ltd. filed an application with Canada’s National Energy Board to construct compression and ancillary facilities at its existing Taylor Junction valve site, approximately 6 kilometers (3.7 miles) northeast of Taylor, BC, within the Peace River Regional District. The proposed expansion would enhance capacity for gas receipts originating in northeastern BC. Construction of the facilities would enable an increase in gas receipt capacity on Alliance’s BC lateral system. Alliance will not increase the mainline capacity of its system with this project, only the ability for existing shippers to increase gas nominations at receipt points in BC. The additional capacity was made available to existing Alliance shippers through a binding open season in October, and Alliance has entered into contracts with the interested shippers. Subject to regulatory approval, site foundations will be poured in Fall 2007 and the major construction activities would occur during 2008. Start-up is scheduled for November 2008.

Enogex Inc. and Amarillo, TX-based producer Pablo Energy II LLC will gather and process natural gas from the Woodford Shale in southeastern Oklahoma through a new joint venture partnership, Atoka Midstream LLC, which is scheduled to begin operating in April. The joint venture between newly formed subsidiaries Enogex Atoka LLC and Pablo Gathering initially will process all of the gas produced by Pablo Energy’s operating wells in Atoka and Coal counties. Production from an estimated 20 wells initially will be processed, with about 18 miles of new pipe operational by July, the partners said. Plans for increasing the processing capacity also are under way. Enogex Atoka will be the managing member and operator of the gathering and processing facilities. “This partnership allows both companies to grow their businesses in the promising Woodford Shale, an area that currently lacks gas-gathering and processing infrastructure,” said Enogex COO Danny Harris. “It is a model we expect to apply to future business opportunities.”

Houston, TX-based CenterPoint Energy announced Thursday that the March natural gas price for residential customers in Minnesota is $1.07 per therm. Assuming normal weather, a typical residential customer can expect to use 130 therms during March, resulting in a bill of approximately $148. Actual bills will depend on how much natural gas individual customers use and how much weather deviates from what is considered normal. CenterPoint Energy is a domestic energy delivery company that serves more than five million metered customers primarily in Arkansas, Louisiana, Minnesota, Mississippi, Oklahoma, and Texas. In Minnesota, CenterPoint Energy is the state’s largest natural gas distribution utility, serving nearly 790,000 customers in 259 communities.

TEPPCO Partners LP has completed the sale of its 50% interest in Mont Belvieu Storage Partners LP and associated assets to Louis Dreyfus Energy Services LP. TEPPCO said it received $168 million for the transaction, which includes proceeds from the sale and about $10 million of cash distributions related to prior earnings. TEPPCO said it plans to use the proceeds from the transaction to fund its portion of the Jonah Gas Gathering System expansion and other organic growth projects.

Citing strong supplies and expected stable prices, Pacific Gas and Electric Co. said its March natural gas retail bills will be down about 18%, compared to February (on average $76.74, compared with $93.94 in February). That’s 10% less than March 2006 bills. However, the utility’s cost of gas is expected to be higher by about 5.6% in March, compared to February. The cost of gas is 0.6% lower than in March 2006.

Due to undercollection of costs from its customers over the past three months, Philadelphia-based PECO said that it is increasing its overall price for natural gas service, effective by March 1, by a total of 7%, or 9.265 cents per 100 cubic feet, marking the company’s first natural gas price increase in more than a year. The Exelon subsidiary services 474,000 suburban natural gas customers in southeastern Pennsylvania. The current purchased gas cost rate will increase from 97 cents per 100 cubic feet of natural gas to $1.06 per 100 cubic feet, so the average monthly residential bill based on 10,000 cubic feet of usage will increase from roughly $131 to $141. Reed Horting, PECO vice president, Gas, said the company has undercollected from customers for its actual gas supply costs during the past three months and now must increase the rate in order to recover this deficit. He noted that unlike gasoline or oil dealers, Pennsylvania gas utilities can only adjust their regulated rates every quarter to reflect their cost of buying gas on the wholesale market. “PECO makes a particular effort to keep rates as low as possible during the winter months when it matters most to customers,” said Horting. “We purchase our supply in a variety of ways as part of a portfolio approach in an effort to keep the cost to customers as stable as possible.” The utility noted that even with the increase, PECO’s purchased gas cost rate is still almost $2.25/Mcf less than it was just a year ago when rates reflected the sharply increased wholesale prices following Hurricanes Katrina and Rita in the Gulf of Mexico. In addition, this increase follows four successive decreases of 6.5%, 8.9%, 13.4% and 4.5% in the last four quarters.

Equity buyout firm American Capital Strategies Ltd. said it invested $37.5 million in Forest Oil Corp.‘s Alaska operating facility last year. The investment through a second lien term loan facility established Forest Alaska Operating LLC as an unrestricted subsidiary and freed capital for Denver-based Forest Oil to develop its reserves, American Capital said. Forest Alaska’s reserves and operations are located both onshore and offshore in the Cook Inlet area. In addition to producing properties, Forest Alaska’s assets include three onshore facilities, seven platform rigs and a processing facility in Kustatan, AK.

El Paso Corp. reported a $175 million net loss (25 cents/share) for the fourth quarter of 2006 but $438 million (65 cents/share) in net income for the year. That compared to a 4Q2005 net loss of $172 million (26 cents/share) and a 2005 net loss of $633 million (98 cents/share). “2006 was a year of major accomplishments for El Paso,” said CEO Doug Foshee. “We reported a swing in profitability of more than $1 billion; our pipeline business reported record earnings and laid the foundation for future expansion-driven growth; our E&P business delivered organic production growth and replaced production through the drill bit; we reduced debt by $2.8 billion; and we eliminated numerous legacy issues. Finally, in December we announced, and last week we closed, the sale of ANR, which is a transformational event for our company as we regain our financial strength and flexibility while maintaining our earnings outlook. We look forward to additional progress in 2007.” Continuing operations in the fourth quarter lost $15 million, or 3 cents/share, because of a pre-tax charge of $188 million related to the divestiture of capacity on the Alliance Pipeline. Results were favorably impacted by a pre-tax, mark-to-market gain of $13 million on derivatives intended to manage the price risk of the company’s natural gas and oil production. Discontinued operations, including ANR Pipeline, for the fourth quarter lost $151 million. El Paso expects to recognize a gain on the ANR sale of $0.7 billion in the first quarter 2007. The company’s exploration and production segment reported quarterly earnings of $137 million, compared with $168 million for the same period in 2005. Lower earnings were primarily the result of lower realized prices. Fourth quarter 2006 production volumes averaged 762 MMcfe/d, up 11% from 2005 levels.

Freeport LNG Development LP, developer of the first liquefied natural gas (LNG) terminal to be built in the U.S. in more than 20 years, has chosen the Internet-based Enviance System for the management, automation and reporting of environmental, health and safety (EHS) compliance. Freeport LNG is developing one of the most technically advanced LNG regasification terminals in the world that will process over 1.5 Bcf/d when completed. The Enviance System allows facilities in the energy, utility, chemical and pharmaceutical industries to centrally manage in real-time all aspects of regulatory compliance. Freeport LNG will utilize the system for managing construction permits as the facility, already in the building phase, prepares to go live in 2008. Freeport LNG will also use the system to manage contractual obligations during construction and operation. After construction, Freeport will leverage Enviance for the day-to-day management, automation and reporting of air, water and safety compliance activities.

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