The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission has granted two certificates for natural gas pipeline projects in the Southeastern U.S. One certificate went to Southern Natural Gas Co. for construction of a controversial pipeline to serve two municipal customers; a second was issued to Columbia Gas Transmission Corp. for the largest single expansion of its pipeline and storage system.
The FERC on May 28 voted 5-0 to grant a certificate to Southern Natural Gas Co. to construct approximately 118 miles of natural gas pipeline to serve two municipal customers. The hotly contested determinations surrounding the project were made in a series of three orders (Docket Nos. CP96-153-002 and
The municipalities, Huntsville and Decatur, both in Alabama, were captive gas customers of Alabama-Tennessee Natural Gas Co. and desired gas transportation services from alternative suppliers. Alabama-Tennessee had objected to those efforts, because the two customers make up almost one-half of its system load. Also, the proposed route of the pipeline was subject to disagreement because of the environmental impacts.
The North Alabama Pipeline Project will transport about 74,850 cubic feet per day of natural gas to five customers in Alabama and Georgia. Construction will affect about 1,200 acres of land, comprising 680 acres of permanent right-of-way and 520 acres of temporary right-of-way. The pipeline will pass through the Wheeler National Wildlife Refuge. The project area could be home to 23 federally listed endangered or threatened species.