FERC issues draft EIS for Gulf Crossing pipeline project

The US Federal Energy Regulatory Commission's staff has issued a draft environmental impact statement outlining mitigation measures for the proposed Gulf Crossing gas pipeline.

Nick Snow
Washington Editor

WASHINGTON, DC, Nov. 5 -- The US Federal Energy Regulatory Commission's staff has issued a draft environmental impact statement (EIS) outlining possible mitigation measures for the proposed Gulf Crossing natural gas pipeline.

The project would consist of 353.2 miles of 42 in. pipeline, four compressor stations totaling 100,734 hp, 17.8 miles of 42-in. loop of the existing Gulf South gas pipeline, a 30,000-hp addition to the recently approved Harrisville compressor station, and construction of seven meter stations, main line valves, and pig launchers and receivers.

The system would move gas produced from the Barnett shale, Bossier sand, Caney Woodford shale, and other plays in Texas and Oklahoma to major market hubs, according to its sponsors, Gulf Crossing Pipeline LLC and Gulf South Pipeline LP. The proposed pipeline has a design capacity of 1.71 bcfd. Construction is projected to start in April 2008 with completion the following October.

The draft EIS noted that the project would use existing utility right-of-way (ROW) for 230.7 miles. It recommended limiting eminent domain authority to acquiring permanent 50-ft-wide ROW and use of existing gas pipeline permanent ROW during construction when possible.

It also recommended that the sponsors develop site-specific crossing plans for the 164 acres of wetlands which the project's construction is expected to disturb. It said the sponsors have agreed to compensate for unavoidable wetland impacts and to implement an environmental inspection and monitoring program to comply with proposed and recommended mitigation measures.

FERC said commissioners will consider staff recommendations and a final EIS when they make a decision on the project.

Contact Nick Snow at nicks@pennwell.com.

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