The D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals last week denied a petitionchallenging FERC-approved tariff revisions of South Georgia NaturalGas on the grounds that it in part amounted to a “collateralattack” on Order 636, which the court previously upheld.
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Crystal Oil Co. of Shreveport, LA, last week closed on itspreviously announced acquisition of Petal Gas Storage Co. Theacquisition of Petal will complement and provide synergies with thesalt dome storage facility already owned by Hattiesburg Gas StorageCo., a subsidiary of Crystal, and which is located less than onemile from the Petal facility. With the acquisition of Petal,Crystal’s subsidiaries will have more than 6.7 Bcf of gas storageworking capacity with the ability to deliver in excess of 670MMcf/d in this major corridor to the northeastern gas markets. JoeAverett, Crystal president, said the acquisition makes Crystal thelargest independent provider of salt cavern gas storage in the U.S.
While some see FERC’s decision in the Granite State GasTransmission case last week as a major shift in its certificatepolicy, others believe the Commission’s dismissal of Texas EasternTransmission’s (Tetco) application to expand the capacity of itsLebanon Lateral reaffirmed that very policy.
Rep. John E. Ensign (R-NV) proposed legislation late last weekthat would provide a 50-cent income tax credit for each gallonequivalent of natural gas, propane and methanol used in vehiclesplaced in service after Dec. 31, 1997. The tax credit will act as a”significant financial” incentive for fleet managers and others tostep up their use of clean, domestic fuels.
One-call pipeline safety legislation moved much closer tobecoming law this week as the Senate voted to add it to omnibustransportation legislation and representatives Richard Hugh Baker(R-LA) and Frank Pallone (D-NJ) introduced a nearly identicalone-call bill in the House of Representatives. The Senate alreadyhas passed one-call as a stand alone bill (S. 1115) but includingit in the larger transportation package increases its chances ofbecoming law.
FERC dealt KN Interstate Gas Transmission a serious blow lastweek in ordering the pipeline to explain a 41% overrun in the costof its Pony Express Pipeline Project and prove the project stillmeets the Commission’s test for rolled-in rate treatment.
Westinghouse reported last week that it had just built thelargest solid-oxide fuel cell (SOFC) generating system for a Dutchenergy distribution utility. The system, which runs on natural gas,is delivering 106 KW to the electric grid plus 80 KW of thermalpower to the area’s district heating system, according to thecompany. The unit is the first to integrate a natural gas reformerwithin the SOFC stack.
An important juncture in the proposed $5 billion merger ofPacific Enterprises and Enova Corp. is expected this week when anadministrative law judge with the California Public UtilitiesCommission recommends a proposed decision to the five-memberregulatory body. The CPUC is then expected to act by the end ofMarch. No one is expecting the proposed decision or the ultimatefinal one by the state to turn down the marriage of the holdingcompanies for Southern California Gas Co. and San Diego Gas andElectric Co., but it is unclear whether the conditions placed onthe deal will make it financially unattractive for one or both ofthe companies