OH/WV Buckeye XPress Pipe Project Moves to Front of FERC Queue

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In January 2017, TransCanada’s Columbia Pipeline subsidiary launched an open season for the Buckeye XPress (BXP) pipeline project (see Columbia Pipeline Launches Open Season for New M-U Project). BXP will expand service along the Columbia Gas Transmission pipeline from Ohio (and PA and WV) to send even more Marcellus/Utica gas to the Gulf via the interconnection at Leach, Kentucky.
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FERC Says Rest of Mountaineer XPress Pipeline OK to Start Up

On Friday TransCanada, owner of Columbia Gas Transmission, issued a press release to say the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission has approved the startup of the remainder of the Mountaineer XPress pipeline project. Just last week we told you that FERC had approved more (but not the rest) of the project to go online (see FERC Says More of Mountaineer XPress Pipeline OK to Start Up).
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FERC Says More of Mountaineer XPress Pipeline OK to Start Up

In January the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) gave permission to TransCanada’s Columbia Pipeline group to start up a portion of the Mountaineer XPress Pipeline in West Virginia (see FERC OK’s Mountaineer XPress Pipe to Start Up in WV). Yesterday FERC gave Columbia permission to start up a wee bit more of the project.
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FERC Approves New England Pipeline Expansion

Map of Portland Natural Gas System (click for larger version)

Last November the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) signaled a project by TransCanada called the Portland XPress Project (PXP) would soon get a final approval, by giving the project a favorable environmental review (see FERC Grants Portland XPress Project Environmental Approval). Not even three months later, FERC has just given final approval for the project to begin.
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TransCanada Plans to Move Western Canadian Gas into New England

TransCanada has cooked up a plan to expand an existing pipeline in New England and connect it to a point in Quebec to flow gas from the opposite side of the continent, Western Canadian natural gas (over 1,000 miles away), into New England! And we can’t get a single new pipeline project approved to flow Marcellus gas a few hundred miles away into New England. Something is seriously wrong with this picture.
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Maryland Pulls a NY, Rejects Pipeline Under Potomac River

Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan (RINO)

We’ve said it before and will say it again: Maryland Republican Gov. Larry Hogan is a major disappointment. Somehow radical leftists have politically emasculated Hogan and now lead him around by the nose (see Maryland Gov. Hogan Pulls the Trigger, Commits Fracking Suicide).
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More Lowball Western Canadian Natgas Coming East to M-U

TransCanada, one of Canada’s leading midstream/pipeline companies, cooked up a deal in 2016 to pipe natural gas from Canada’s West Coast to the East Coast in order to fend off cheap supplies of Marcellus/Utica gas that will flow into Canada from the NEXUS and Rover pipelines (see TransCanada Pipe Drops Price 42% to Compete with Marcellus/Utica). TransCanada dropped their pipeline price to lure drillers by (theoretically) making it less expensive to get gas from Western Canada, some 2,400 miles away, than from the Marcellus, just 400 miles away. Following a couple of open seasons and stiff regulatory hurdles, the plan was adopted and went into service in November 2017 (see TransCanada Pipe Begins Lowball Shipping to Compete with Marc/Utica).
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FERC Grants Portland XPress Project Environmental Approval

Map of Portland Natural Gas System (click for larger version)

TransCanada is attempting to do what so far, no one else has been able to accomplish: Increase flows of Marcellus/Utica gas into New England. The way they’re doing it is via the Portland Natural Gas Transmission System (PNGTS), a 295-mile pipeline that spans New England from the Canadian border to pipeline connections in New Hampshire, Maine and Massachusetts. No, TransCanada is not proposing to build any new pipelines as part of their plan. In fact, there is very little construction in what TransCanada is calling its Portland XPress Project (PXP). Phase I is now under construction and Phase II will soon be under construction. TransCanada filed for Phase III in June. Earlier this week FERC issued a favorable environmental assessment (EA) for Phase III of the project, which is prelude to issuing a final approval.
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FERC Approves Rest of Columbia WB XPress Pipe for Startup

In early October the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) granted TransCanada permission to begin service on part of its Columbia WB XPress pipeline project, the “Western Build” portion of the project (see FERC Approves Columbia WB XPress Pipe for Partial Startup). The good news is that yesterday FERC granted permission to start up the rest of WB XPress, the “Eastern Build.” The $900 million WB XPress project is located in West Virginia and Virginia and expands capacity along the Columbia Gas Transmission (CGT) pipeline system by 1.3 billion cubic feet per day (Bcf/d), linking Marcellus gas supplies to new markets. The whole WB XPress enchilada is now ready to let it flow.
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1 Bcf/d of M-U Gas Ready to Flow to Gulf Coast via Columbia Pipe

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According to RBN Energy, “TransCanada’s Columbia Gas and Columbia Gulf transmission systems are gearing up to place into service their tandem Mountaineer Xpress and Gulf Xpress expansions, which will allow another 1 Bcf/d [billion cubic feet per day] of Marcellus/Utica gas to flow south as far as Louisiana.” This is seriously good news! Yet more of our gas will now flow to other markets where it will fetch higher prices. It was only less than a year ago, in December 2017, that the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission approved both projects (see Leach XPress Goes Online; FERC Approves Mountaineer & Gulf XPress). Part of Mountaineer Xpress went online last month. The rest of Mountaineer XPress and the startup of Gulf XPress is expected this month.
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FERC OKs ANR Pipe Expansion, M-U Gas Going to Illinois & Wisconsin?

TransCanada’s ANR Pipeline system has just received permission from the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) to begin service on the Wisconsin South Expansion Project, a project to expand capacity along the ANR in northern Illinois and Wisconsin. This is the first time we’ve highlighted this project. So why *are* we highlighting it? Because we think Marcellus/Utica molecules will be some of the molecules flowing along the expanded ANR–all the way to Wisconsin.
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FERC to Rehear Decision re Columbia Gas Pipeline Under Potomac

Anti-fossil fuelers are on a holy mission to stop a 3.5-mile, 8-inch pipeline from being built under the Potomac River by Columbia Gas (see Maryland Antis Oppose 13th Pipeline Under Potomac as “Dangerous”). The pipeline, from Maryland on one side of the river to West Virginia on the other side, will be built to feed a larger pipeline project from Mountaineer Gas called the Eastern Panhandle Expansion. The Mountaineer project is a pipeline to deliver Marcellus/Utica natural gas via local distribution channels to a new industrial facility in Berkeley County, WV, and to provide gas to other local businesses and residents in the Tri-State area. Mountaineer began building their project in March (see Mountaineer Gas Begins Work on Morgan County, WV Pipeline). Here’s the inconvenient truth that mainstream news organizations fail to report: This tiny 3.5-mile pipeline will be Columbia’s 13th pipeline under the Potomac! Yet antis insist THIS is the one pipeline that will explode and contaminate the Potomac and make the water flowing down the muddy Potomac undrinkable for millions. In July, the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) approved Columbia’s under-the-river pipeline project (see FERC Approves Pipeline Under the Potomac River from Md. to WV). At the time, Democrat Commissioner Cheryl LaFleur voted to approve it–but she did so grudgingly and made sure to express it. Democrat Commissioner Dick Glick voted to “dissent, in part,” meaning he sort of approved it, but he sort of didn’t (and would really rather it not get built). Antis immediately filed a request for “rehearing”–to have FERC revisit their decision to approve the project (something FERC rarely does). Sadly, FERC has agreed to rehear their decision on the project–two months after approving it. Now that FERC is down by one Republican member, it’s all too likely the Dem members will take the opportunity to vote no on the project a second time, creating a 2-2 split that will further delay the project…
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FERC Approves Mountaineer XPress Pipe Rate Increase

We spotted a story that contains information we don’t fully understand. Columbia Gas Transmission is currently building the Mountaineer XPress Pipeline, a $2 billion, 170-mile pipeline that will flow 2.7 billion cubic feet (Bcf) per day of natural gas from existing and future points of receipt along or near the Columbia pipeline system–most of it located in West Virginia (see Details on Columbia Pipeline Mountaineer XPress Pipeline Project). At 2.7 Bcf/d, Mountaineer XPress is the second largest (by volume) new pipeline project for the Marcellus/Utica region–second only to Rover’s 3.25 Bcf/d pipeline. It is a big and important project. When Columbia (aka TransCanada) filed the original application, approved by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, they sought permission to charge $9.827 per dekatherm (one dekatherm is equivalent to one thousand cubic feet, or 1 Mcf) to flow gas along the pipeline. Put another way, shippers without a contract who want to ship along the pipeline will pay $9.83/Mcf to ship gas. Since gas typically fetches less than $3/Mcf, how can you make any money? That’s what we can’t figure out. Perhaps one of our sharp MDN readers can enlighten us? MDN Note: We have THE BEST readers! Dmitry Brown, a Senior Analyst with UGI Energy Services, wrote to clear up our confusion. The prices are per month, not per day. Shippers on MXP were expecting to pay $9.827/Mcf/month, or $ 0.32/Mcf/day. Columbia recently filed a request with FERC to increase the charge from $9.83/Mcf to a whopping $14.66/Mcf! The reason, according to Columbia, is that project costs have ballooned from $2 billion to $3 billion, “related to contractor labor costs, inspection costs, and outside services costs that substantially exceeded the contingency established for such charges.” Last Friday FERC approved the 49% increase. Now shippers will have to pay $14.663/Mcf/month, or $0.48/Mcf/day. Quite an increase…
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