FERC readies enviro review of Texas-Mexico gas pipeline project

The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission on Jan. 22 laid out the environmental review schedule for a gas pipeline project that would cross the Mexico border in Texas and serve an unnamed new power plant in Mexico.

On July 1, 2014, Impulsora Pipeline LLC requested an authorization under Section 3 of the Natural Gas Act to construct and operate certain natural gas pipeline facilities across an international border. The proposed project is known as the Impulsora Crossing Project, and would be designed to transport natural gas across the United States-Mexico border to a proposed power plant in Colombia, Nuevo Leon, Mexico, and provide a new interconnect to the Eagle Ford Gathering pipeline system in order to expand service to industrial customers in Mexico.

This Jan. 22 notice identifies the FERC staff’s planned schedule for the completion of the environmental assessment (EA) for the project. The EA is to be issued on Feb. 13, with a May 14 decision deadline. If a schedule change becomes necessary, additional notice will be provided so that the relevant agencies are kept informed of the project’s progress.

The exact legal name of the applicant company is Colombia Pipeline LLC, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Howard Midstream Energy Partners LLC. Howard is a midstream service provider focused primarily on the Eagle Ford Shale region of South Texas.

The proposed project would consist of one 36-inch-diameter, 4,000-foot-long natural gas pipeline, and one 2,500-foot-long 12-inch-diameter natural gas pipeline that would run parallel to the 36-inch-diameter pipeline. The pipelines would be spaced 22 feet apart and directionally drilled underneath the Rio Grande River in Webb County, Texas, using the Horizontal Directional Drilling (HDD) method. The project would also involve construction of permanent above-ground facilities within a 1.6-acre area that would include a metering station and pigging facility consisting of one 12-inch and one 36-inch receiver (with corresponding 12-inch and 36-inch launchers).

At the International Border, a 0.48-mile pipeline on the Mexico side will be constructed on behalf of Impulsora LT S.A.P.I. de C.V., which will redeliver natural gas supplies into the pipeline system owned by Con-Gas S.A.P.I. de C.V. to the proposed power plant.

An applicant contact is: Brandon Seale, Vice President of Mexican Operations, Howard Midstream Energy Partners LLC, 17086 Interstate Highway 10 West, Suite 210, San Antonio, Texas 78257, phone (210) 278-1543, fax (210) 298-2221, bseale@howardenergypartners.com.

About Barry Cassell 20414 Articles
Barry Cassell is Chief Analyst for GenerationHub covering coal and emission controls issues, projects and policy. He has covered the coal and power generation industry for more than 24 years, beginning in November 2011 at GenerationHub and prior to that as editor of SNL Energy’s Coal Report. He was formerly with Coal Outlook for 15 years as the publication’s editor and contributing writer, and prior to that he was editor of Coal & Synfuels Technology and associate editor of The Energy Report. He has a bachelor’s degree from Central Michigan University.