Natural gas supplies could remain severely restricted in New England after another pipeline developer has indicated an unwillingness to add supply without a “pipeline tax” on New England customers.
A recent article by Natural Gas Intelligence states that Algonquin Gas Transmission LLC has told the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FEC) that is plans to “take additional time to solidify the commercial foundation” of its Access Northeast Project. Access Northeast is one of two major pipeline projects that could have brought a significant increase to New England’s natural gas supply.
The other project, Northeast Energy Direct, was shelved earlier this year after the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court ruled that the “pipeline tax” that would have imposed a surcharge on utility customers is not legal. Utilities Eversource and National Grid have withdrawn their applications to purchase natural gas from the Northeast Energy Direct project, and New England continues to see some of the highest natural gas prices in the world.
Algonquin told FERC in a recent monthly progress report that it “expects limited activity” in the project docket “while this evaluation is ongoing,” according to the Natural Gas Intelligence article. “Algonquin pointed out that ISO New England Inc. has made it clear that the region needs additional natural gas infrastructure to improve reliability and prevent heating and electric demand from competing for limited capacity during winter months,” the article states. “Natural gas constraints have led to both electric and natural gas price blowouts in New England during periods of extreme cold the last few winters.”
To read the Natural Gas Intelligence article, click here.
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