FERC gives Sabal Trail go-ahead to start service on gas pipeline

Washington (Platts)--9 Jun 2017 412 pm EDT/2012 GMT

The US Federal Energy Regulatory Commission has granted Sabal Trail Transmission permission to start service on part of the 515-mile, 1 Bcf/d natural gas pipeline, which would boost supplies to the Southeast.

In an order Friday morning, FERC specifically authorized Sabal Trail to place into service about 482 miles of mainline between an interconnect in Tallapoosa County, Alabama, and the southern interconnect in Osceola County, Florida, as well as compressor stations in Alabama and Florida, and several meter and regulation stations.

The project is meant to provide power-hungry Florida with more gas to feed generation. Its first phase is designed to provide an initial capacity of 830 MMcf/d, and the company's recent in-service request covered about half that volume.

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In approving the request to start service, FERC did not address requests from environmental groups that urged FERC to hold off on allowing the pipeline to enter service while they await a ruling from a federal appeals court on their challenge to FERC's certificate of convenience and necessity.

Sabal Trail (CP15-17) is part of a trio of projects that include Transcontinental Gas Pipe Line's Hillabee Expansion and the Florida Southeast Connection, collectively known as the Southeast Market Pipelines Project and totaling 685.5 miles, designed to feed growing demand from gas-fired power generation in Florida.

The Sabal line is being built by a joint venture of Enbridge, NextEra Energy and Duke Energy. It originates in Tallapoosa County, Alabama, and will transport gas to Georgia and Florida and terminate at the new hub south of Orlando. It is intended to supply gas to Florida Power & Light and to Duke Energy Florida.

--Maya Weber,

--Edited by Richard Rubin,

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