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Companies plan 2,500 miles of pipelines out of rockies.

In recent weeks, both El Paso a venture and made up of Kinder Morgan Energy Partners and Sempra Pipelines & Storage have announced plans for major pipeline projects out of the Rockies.

El Paso's plans involve the newly proposed Continental Connector. As planned, the project will connect El Paso's western pipelines, which offer extensive access to growing natural gas supplies in the Rockies and Mid-Continent regions, with El Paso's southern and eastern pipelines, which offer access to markets from Florida to New England as well as the Midwest. The project would also provide access to production in north and east Texas.

In addition to taking advantage of El Paso's existing pipeline systems, Continental Connector as proposed would involve the construction of more than 1,000 miles of up to 42inch diameter pipeline to connect El Paso's Colorado Interstate, WIC, and Cheyenne Plains pipelines to points on the company's ANR Pipeline, Tennessee Gas Pipeline, and Southern Natural Gas systems. El Paso anticipates that the project can be placed in service as early as November 2008.

El Paso began a non-binding open season on Oct. 4 running through Nov. 5, for input from potential shippers to better define the full scope of the project. A copy of the Open Season Guidelines is available at http://www.elpaso.com/business/continentalconnector.shtm.

Plans by Kinder Morgan and Sempra Pipelines & Storage call for a natural gas pipeline that will link producing areas in the Rocky Mountain region to the upper Midwest and eastern United States. The two companies have entered into exclusive negotiations regarding a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) that will result in the Wyoming Natural Gas Pipeline Authority (WNGPA) joining the two companies in support of their recently announced proposal.

As designed, the 42-inch diameter pipeline will have capacity of up to 2 Bcf/d and cost an estimated $3 billion. The preliminary route of the 1,500-mile pipeline originates at the Wamsutter Hub in Wyoming and extends to eastern Ohio with an ultimate route to be selected based on shipper interest.

The WNGPA recently held a public meeting to consider its role in the project and approved entering into exclusive negotiations with KMP and the Sempra affiliate. Pending final negotiations, the WNGPA will contract for up to 200 MMcf/d of firm capacity on the proposed pipeline, explore use of its $1 billion in bonding authority to provide debt financing for the project and support for the extension of the project to the Opal Hub in Wyoming.

Scott Parker, president of Kinder Morgan's Natural Gas Pipelines Group, and George Liparidis, president of Sempra Pipelines & Storage, said they are pleased the WNGPA is supportive of this new project. "Their involvement is an important step in the viability of this project," he said.

With the support of the WNGPA, it is anticipated the Wamsutter-to-Cheyenne portion of this project will be completed by year-end 2006. The Cheyenne-to-Midwest portion of the pipeline project will be completed by year-end 2007, and the eastern portion of the project providing direct access to markets in the Northeast in late 2008 or early 2009.

KMP and Sempra Pipelines & Storage announced previously that they will share responsibility for development activities.

For information contact Jeff Rawls at Kinder Morgan (303) 914-4903, Ryan O'Neal at Sempra Pipelines & Storage (619) 696-4585 or Bryan Hassler at the Wyoming Natural Gas Pipeline Authority (303) 748-6473.
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Title Annotation:PROJECTS
Comment:Companies plan 2,500 miles of pipelines out of rockies.(PROJECTS)
Publication:Pipeline & Gas Journal
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:Nov 1, 2005
Words:558
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