National Fuel Gas has received permission from federal energy regulators to move ahead with its plans to build a pipeline that will stretch from the Marcellus Shale region in Pennsylvania to Niagara Falls.
The Federal Energy Regulatory Agency this week granted authorization to National Fuel’s Northern Access 2015 pipeline project, which is being built in conjunction with Tennessee Gas Pipeline Co.’s Niagara Expansion Project pipeline. Together, the two projects will create a pipeline running from the Marcellus Shale region in Pennsylvania to a connection with the TransCanada pipeline near Niagara Falls.
The pipeline expansions give National Fuel options for transporting natural gas produced by its drilling business in the Marcellus Shale region in Pennsylvania to markets across the Northeast, as well as Canada.
National Fuel expects to spend $66 million on the Northern Access project, which will have the capacity to transport 140,000 dekatherms of natural gas daily. National Fuel has signed agreements with Tennessee Gas to lease the capacity to transport on the pipeline for a 15-year period. (A dekatherm is a unit of heat equal to 100,000 British thermal units, or about 1,000 cubic feet of gas.)
Construction is expected to begin this month on the Northern Access project, which is scheduled to begin service in November.
National Fuel’s oil and gas drilling business also has agreed to lease the capacity to transport 158,000 dekatherms of natural gas on Tennessee Gas’ Niagara Expansion Project over a 15-year period, giving it access to Canadian markets. Construction on that pipeline is expected to begin next month, with service beginning in November.