Sempra Energy International is in the running for its third gasproject in Mexico with its bid to build distribution infrastructureto serve the cities of Torreon, Gomez, Palacio, Ciudad Lerdo, andDurango with the La Laguna-Durango system. Mexico’s EnergyRegulatory Commission (CRE) will announce the winning bidder nolater than May 20.

The La Laguna system is to serve 50,000 customers by its fifthyear in operation. Projected investment is US$30 million for thesystem, which will deliver gas expected to supplant fuel oil usage.

San Diego-based Sempra Energy and Mexico’s Proxima currentlydistribute gas in two geographic zones, Mexicali and Chihuahua.Sempra will invest US$64 million in these projects’ first fiveyears of operation in order to build more than 994 miles ofpipeline, which will supply nearly 77,000 residential, industrialand commercial customers.

Additionally, a Sempra subsidiary was awarded a bid by Mexico’sFederal Electricity Commission (CFE) to supply the PresidenteJuarez thermoelectric generating station in Rosarito, BajaCalifornia. Sempra will invest more than $28 million in order todevelop the 22-mile system. Along with the transportation there isa 10-year gas supply agreement. Construction on this project is tostart in the next month or two.

“The idea behind all this, and part of Sempra’s strategy, is tolook for projects in northern Mexico where there’s a chance forinterconnection across the border,” said Sempra spokesman MichaelClark. As far as making money, both Mexicali and Chihuahua are inthe black for us.”

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