Northern Access Project Gets Favorable EA From FERC

Map courtesy of National Fuel Gas Supply Corp. and Empire Pipeline Inc.

The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) has issued a favorable environmental assessment for the proposed Northern Access Project, bringing it one step closer to fruition.

National Fuel Gas Supply Corp. and Empire Pipeline Inc. filed a joint application with FERC on November 2, 2015. If approved, the Northern Access Project will include construction of 96 miles (154 km) of 24-in. (609-mm) diameter pipeline, beginning from Sergeant Township, Pennsylvania, USA, and ending at the existing Porterville Compressor Station in the Town of Elma, New York, USA. The Northern Access Project will transport regionally produced supplies of natural gas to multiple markets in North America, providing energy to Western New York, the Midwest, and Canada.

National Fuel will install an additional 5350 hp (3991 kW) of compression at the existing Porterville Compressor Station. The proposal includes reciprocating engine driven compressors. The existing station currently operates at 6000 hp (4476 kW). Appurtenant facilities would include a station control/auxiliary building, intake and exhaust silencers, gas coolers, unit blowdown silencers, a filter-separator with a liquids tank, and an emergency electrical power generator. In addition, measurement and control facilities and a pressure reduction station would be installed at the existing station. Suction and discharge pipelines would be installed to connect the new compressors to the existing X-North Pipeline in the Porterville Compressor Station facility.

Empire Pipeline will construct a new 22,214 hp (16,571 kW) compressor station in the Town of Pendleton, New York. The Pendleton Compressor Station will include two gas turbine compressor units. The compressor station equipment will consist of acoustically designed compressor buildings, turbine air inlet and exhaust systems, low noise turbine lube oil coolers and gas coolers, aboveground gas piping, an emergency generation, and additional ancillary equipment.

Empire Pipeline will construct a new natural gas dehydration facility in the Town of Wheatfield, New York. This station will be an unmanned facility containing a glycol reboiler/regenerator, glycol contactor, as well as pumps for the glycol exchange, and the required piping valves and electronic controls necessary to operate the unit remotely. The dehydration station equipment will consist of two dehydration trains, two regeneration skids, aboveground gas piping, an emergency generator, and additional ancillary equipment.

National Fuel anticipates that mobilization and construction of the compressor stations will commence in early fall 2016, with full project construction underway by late fall 2016. These start dates are subject to receipt of necessary permits and regulatory approvals. National Fuel anticipates that all facilities would be placed in service on November 1, 2017.