Alberta Northeast Gas Ltd. (ANE), a consortium of 13 local distribution companies (LDCs) in the U.S. Northeast and the largest importer of Canadian natural gas in the region, said last Tuesday its member companies executed binding agreements with TransCanada PipeLines Ltd. and Union Gas for pipeline transportation capacity that will provide them with direct access to the major gas sales and storage hub located in Dawn, ON.

Under the terms of the new capacity agreements, the participating LDCs will add more than 190,000 Dth/d of direct access to the Dawn receipt point as of Nov. 1 of this year in time for the 2005-2006 winter heating season, the Beverly, MA-based group said. ANE said it also is developing plans for additional service beginning in November 2007. The capacity additions will supplement ANE’s existing service options from Alberta.

Gas deliveries will be transported on the Union Gas and TransCanada systems and will enter the United States via the Iroquois Gas Transmission system at Waddington, NY, and at receipt points at Niagara Falls and Chippawa, NY, ANE noted.

The new pipeline transportation contracts will provide access to new gas supply sources not previously available to the LDCs and will provide new infrastructure arrangements to replace a portion of the existing ANE gas supply contracts, which are due to expire in 2006 and 2007.

“This important new short-haul access feature for ANE’s regional gas purchasing consortium will enhance the flexibility of our regional gas supply infrastructure,” said Robert B. Catell, ANE chairman and CEO of KeySpan Corp. “It will also supplement our continuing long-haul gas supply deliveries from Western Canada.”

Participants in ANE, which was formed in 1986, are Bay State Gas Co., Central Hudson Gas & Electric, Connecticut Natural Gas Corp., KeySpan Energy Delivery of New England (Boston Gas Co., Colonial Gas Co., Essex Gas Co. and Energy North Natural Gas Inc.), KeySpan Energy Delivery of New York, KeySpan Energy Delivery of Long Island, National Fuel Gas Distribution Corp., Northern Utilities, Southern Connecticut Gas and Yankee Gas Services Co.

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