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PG&E GAS TRANSMISSION
NORTHWEST ANNOUNCES RESULTS FOR 2003 EXPANSION OPEN SEASON
Portland, Oregon - PG&E
Gas Transmission Northwest (GTN) said today that it received binding
precedent agreements with 25-year terms from customers for approximately
250,000 decatherms per day (250 MDth/day) of expansion capacity
for service in 2003, based on results of an open season that concluded
The proposed 2003 expansion
will be in addition to GTN's 2002 expansion, currently pending before
the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC), in which GTN proposes
to add approximately 200 MDth/day in mainline capacity with partial
service commencing as soon as November 2001. In total, the two expansions
would increase capacity on the GTN system by more than 400 MDth/day
to in excess of 3,100 MDth/day by November 2003.
"The response we received
from shippers for both our 2002 and 2003 open seasons provides us
a clear signal that demand for more capacity on our pipeline is
very strong," said Peter G. Lund, vice president of the PG&E National
Energy Group, which includes the GTN system. "New power plant development,
both in the Pacific Northwest and California, is a primary catalyst
behind the increased demand. Our goal is to play a primary role
in serving this new demand and help the West meet its growing energy
In April, GTN filed with
the FERC for permission to construct its 2002 expansion. The FERC
has indicated that it will process that application on an expedited
basis because of the need for more energy capacity in the West.
With expedited FERC review, GTN's objective is to have this first
mainline expansion fully in service by the summer of 2002.
GTN is exploring the option
of also seeking expedited FERC review for the 2003 expansion. The
company expects to file its project application with the FERC by
"We are exploring whether
an expedited schedule could enable us to have our 2003 expansion
in service by the 2002/2003 winter heating season," Lund said. "We
will work closely with the FERC and other interested parties to
determine whether this is feasible."
The GTN system is the most
direct link between the prolific western Canadian gas supplies and
the growing gas markets in the Pacific Northwest and California.
GTN is the largest U.S. transporter of Canadian natural gas and
is 100 percent contracted, with a current average contract term
extending through 2013. The pipeline operated at near 100 percent
of its capacity for much of 2000.
The GTN system includes
1,335 miles of pipeline along a 612-mile route which begins at the
Idaho/British Columbia border, traversing northern Idaho, southeastern
Washington and central Oregon, and terminates at the Oregon/California
border, where it interconnects with the Pacific Gas and Electric
Company pipeline system. The proposed expansion would add capacity
to the entire length of the GTN system.
More specifics about GTN's
2003 pipeline expansion will be available on the company's pipeline
operations web site, E-TRANS, early next week.