- FERC yesterday issued a certificate to Millennium Pipeline, authorizing the company to move ahead with its Eastern System Upgrade project in New York. The project will add 233,000 MMcf/day of system capacity.
- While some upgrades to the Millennium system have faced controversy and opposition, Platts notes that the New York State Department of Environmental Quality has already issued an air and water certificate for the Eastern System Upgrade.New York state and FERC are now locked in a legal battle over approval of the 8-mile Valley Lateral Pipeline that would move gas from the existing Millennium Pipeline to the 680 MW Valley Energy Center in Orange County, N.Y.
- Meanwhile, North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper has asked for more information from the developers of the Atlantic Coast Pipeline under its obligation in section 401 of the Clean Water Act, Southeast Energy News reports. The section requires the state to certify that the interstate pipeline will not damage its streams, rivers and waterways.
The project approved this week includes an approximately 7.8-mile pipeline loop in Orange County, N.Y.; a new compressor station in Sullivan County, N.Y., with one 22,400 HP Solar Titan 130E gas-fired turbine compressor unit; and a new 22,400 horsepower Solar Titan gas-fired turbine compressor.
Millennium is currently marketing the remaining 20,500 Dth/d of available service. Following a 2015 open season, the company executed long-term precedent agreements with nine local distribution companies or municipalities, for 202,500 Dth/d of firm transportation service — more than 90% of the total design capacity of the project. The proposed facilities are estimated to cost approximately $275 million.
Another Millennium pipeline, however, has faced opposition and it now in court. Earlier this month, FERC rejected a request by New York to block construction of the 8-mile Valley Lateral Pipeline, which aimed to move shale gas from the existing Millennium Pipeline to the 680 MW Valley Energy Center in Orange County, N.Y.
The federal agency previously ruled the state had waited too long to reject a water quality certificate Millennium had request. Next month, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit will hear arguments over the lateral. The court previously approved a temporary stay of construction.
On another front, North Carolina officials continue to perform due diligence, pressing Atlantic Coast Pipeline developers for more information. Analysts told SEN that the inquiries were not out of the ordinary. Last month, state regulators asked FERC to reconsider the return on equity it granted to the pipeline project in its October approval.