Rockies Express Pipeline (REX) said interim service on the 683-mile REX East will be delayed from April 1 to the first half of April. The pipeline blamed wet weather for the delay.

“REX continues to affirm our previously projected in-service dates for Lebanon and Clarington [OH]. However, REX will be unable to attain the previously projected Interim in-service date of April 1,” the pipeline said in an informational posting. “Initial REX East service (or interim service) is projected to commence sometime within the first half of April 2009, with a capacity of 1,600 MDth/d into Zone 3. This will include deliveries to NGPL [Natural Gas Pipeline Company of America] (Moultrie County, IL), Trunkline (Douglas County, IL), Midwestern (Edgar County, IL), and PEPL [Panhandle Eastern Pipe Line] (Putnam County, IN). In addition, REX expects to have the Ameren (Moultrie County, IL) delivery point available for service contemporaneously with the interim service delivery points.”

Additionally, service to Lebanon, OH, is projected to commence June 15 with a capacity of 1,600 MDth/d. In-service of the fully powered REX East pipeline to Clarington, OH, is projected to commence Nov. 1 with a capacity of 1,800 MDth/d.

“Ongoing weather impacts and tight time lines to completion as a result of earlier regulatory delays coupled with customary construction challenges have rendered the April 1 interim in-service date no longer feasible,” REX said. “Three of nine horizontal directional drills remain to be completed, along with three of five pipeline spreads, four compressor stations, and five meter stations. REX is experiencing very wet conditions across the entire project including severe flooding in certain areas.

“Based on a projection of reasonable weather and effective construction progress over the next several weeks, REX expects to be able to commence interim in-service no later than mid-April. A more specific in-service projection will be provided as we complete more of the tasks required to establish service.”

The next progress update is scheduled for next Thursday (March 19).

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