FERC would not have jurisdiction over in-state Alaska gas line

The US Federal Energy Regulatory Commission said Mar. 19 it would not, under most circumstances contemplated by Alaska’s In-State Gas Team, have jurisdiction over an eventual in-state pipeline.

Christopher E. Smith
OGJ Pipeline Editor

HOUSTON, Mar. 22 -- The US Federal Energy Regulatory Commission said Mar. 19 it would not, under most circumstances contemplated by Alaska’s In-State Gas Team, have jurisdiction over an eventual in-state pipeline.

The agency acknowledged the possibility of Alaskan natural gas eventually being transported to other US states, but FERC said it would not be able to rule on such a matter unless formally asked to do so as part of a particular proceeding.

The FERC statement came in response to a Jan. 28 letter from in-state gas line project manager Bob Swenson outlining three in-state pipeline scenarios and requesting clarification of various federal agencies’ potential role in the process.

Scenario 1 would have all North Slope gas transported by the in-state line sold directly to end-users who would consume the gas entirely in Alaska. Under Scenario 2, however, some, and potentially a majority of, the gas would be delivered via connections with the existing intrastate pipeline grid to Kenai LNG for export to foreign markets. FERC ruled in both of these instances that the line would not be subject to its jurisdiction.

In Scenario 3, a portion of the gas also would proceed to Kenai LNG, but with the potential for at least some of it to be shipped to US customers if an LNG receiving terminal were constructed on the US West Coast. FERC stated that the fact that some of the gas in Scenario 3 might be transported in interstate commerce could result in the proposed in-state line becoming fully subject to the agency’s jurisdiction.

Contact Chris Smith at chriss@ogjonline.com

More in Pipelines