A Texas company wants to build a 76-mile pipeline extension to help move natural gas from the Utica and Marcellus shales to the Gulf Coast.
Texas Eastern Transmission LP said in a federal filing that it has agreements with four companies to transport natural gas.
The Ohio Pipeline Energy Network (OPEN) Project, would connect 30-inch pipe from Kensington in southern Columbiana County to an existing pipeline in Monroe County in eastern Ohio. The line would pass under Columbiana, Carroll, Jefferson, Belmont and Monroe counties in eastern Ohio.
The project’s estimated price tag: $468 million.
Chesapeake Energy, CONSOL Energy, Total Gas & Power North America and Rice Energy have pledged to transport 550,000 dekatherms a day, Texas Eastern said in a 337-page filing with the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission.
A dekatherm is equal to 970 cubic feet of natural gas, about the amount needed to meet the needs of an average gas-heated home for four days.
The gas would go to the Texas Eastern hub at Egan, La.
The new pipeline, with bidirectional flow under the plan, would mark a change in natural gas distribution in the United States.
Traditionally, gas has flowed from the Gulf Coast and western North America to the eastern part of the nation. But as the Utica play in Ohio and the Marcellus play in Pennsylvania, West Virginia and Ohio continue producing natural gas, projections show Ohio and surrounding states could become net natural gas exporters.
In addition to the 30-inch pipeline, Texas Eastern would build a compressor station in Jefferson County and make adjustments to existing compressor centers in other states to allow bidirectional flow.
“The project is designed to provide pipeline transportation capacity to deliver new incremental production from the emerging Utica shale and Marcellus shale plays to growing and diverse markets in the Midwest, Southeast and Gulf Coast,” Spectra said in a fact sheet.
“The rapidly emerging Appalachian production area, including the Utica shale play, has created new opportunities to increase supply diversity for growing domestic natural gas markets.
The Utica shale play is proving to hold impressive quantities of natural gas, oil and natural gas liquids.”
The pipeline will provide direct access to the Gulf Coast for the first time for Utica shale natural gas, the company said.
Texas Eastern, a subsidiary of Spectra Energy Corp., wants to have the new pipeline and facilities in operation by Nov. 1, 2015.
A new pipeline has been in the works since late 2011. Partners involved when the project was unveiled were Columbus-based American Electric Power (an electric utility) and Chesapeake Energy.
Spectra, based in Houston, filed its intent to proceed last June with the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission. Four public meetings were held in the region. A formal application was filed with FERC on Jan. 31.
The Texas Eastern pipeline system stretches 9,200 miles from Texas and the Gulf Coast to the Northeast. It serves seven Ohio power plants and five local distribution companies.
In Ohio, Spectra operates 1,029 miles of pipelines in 22 counties. It also has eight Ohio compressor stations that push the natural gas to maintain velocity and pressure in the line.
It is also a partner in the proposed Nexus pipeline that would carry natural gas across northern Ohio from Carroll County to Michigan and Ontario.
Bob Downing can be reached at 330-996-3745 or firstname.lastname@example.org.