Record warmth and much below average storage withdrawals this winter have prompted Natural Gas Pipeline Company of America to file a request with FERC to increase the capacity of its Cook Mills storage field by 1.2 Bcf to 6.4 Bcf. The increase would be accomplished by raising the pressure of the field, which is located in Coles and Douglas counties, IL. No new facilities are planned, and NGPL said it does not intend to increase the deliverability of the field.

NGPL said during this unseasonably warm winter, withdrawal rates fell below minimum levels at its aquifer storage fields, forcing the company to shift volumes to Cook Mills, the only depleted reservoir volumetric storage field in NGPL’s market area. Failure to transfer the excess volumes to Cook Mills would have resulted in reduced deliverability at NGPL’s aquifers, putting the company in jeopardy of not being able to meet peak day deliveries in the future.

The shift raised the volume of the Cook Mills field from its maximum of 5.2 Bcf to 5.8 Bcf by Dec. 29. On Feb. 10, the volumes in Cook Mills had been reduced back down to 5.2 Bcf. However, engineering and operational data show that the Cook Mills field can be safely expanded, NGPL told FERC.

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