FERC has authorized Discovery Gas Transmission LLC to construct a new platform and pipeline facilities in South Timbalier Block 283 in the Gulf of Mexico (GOM) to extend its system and provide firm transportation for new deepwater natural gas sources in the southeast quadrant of Keathley Canyon, “a frontier area for oil and gas exploration and development.”
Discovery told the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission that its new facilities represent the first Commission-jurisdictional infrastructure development associated with this area of Keathley Canyon, a “potentially important future source of energy.” The Lower Tertiary Trend has become a hot spot in recent Department of Interior lease sales, in part because some of the biggest recent discoveries are in Keathley blocks, including Anadarko Petroleum Corp.’s Lucius (see Daily GPI, April 26); ExxonMobil Corp.’s Hadrian North (see Daily GPI, June 9, 2011); and BP plc’s Kaskida (see Daily GPI, Sept. 3, 2009).
The new Discovery facilities would provide capacity for about 405,000 Dth/d of firm service. They would also allow Discovery to launch pigging operations, which over the last two to three years have been hindered due to a low level of production being received into the producer-owned Lobster Platform in Ewing Bank Block 873, which is Discovery’s origination point.
The Discovery system aggregates Outer Continental Shelf and deepwater gas production offshore Louisiana and redelivers the gas through multiple interconnects with the onshore pipeline grid. The facilities to be constructed, within two years of the FERC order, are a four-pile junction platform, a 9.5-mile mainline extension pipeline, a 10-mile emergency outlet lateral and related appurtenant facilities. The project essentially moving its origination point from the Lobster Platform to the location of the new junction platform in South Timbalier 283.
The pipeline has signed life-of-lease transportation service agreements with six shippers under its FT-2 rate schedule. They are Anadarko US Offshore Corp., Apache Deepwater LLC, Eni Petroleum LLC, ExxonMobil, Petrobras America Inc. and Plains Offshore Operations Inc.
In January 2012, Williams’ Discovery Producer Services LLC announced a separate project to expand its nonjurisdictional gathering system to gather more than 400 MMcf/d from the Keathley Canyon, Walker Ridge and Green Canyon blocks (see Daily GPI, Jan. 20, 2012).
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