FERC readies environmental review of Transco gas pipeline project in Virginia

The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission on April 1 put out for notice a March 23 application from Transcontinental Gas Pipe Line Co. LLC for a new gas pipeline to serve Virginia Electric and Power‘s 1,600-MW Greensville combined-cycle project in Greensville County, Va.

Transco is seeking FERC authorization to construct and operate the Virginia Southside Expansion Project II, which will enable Transco to provide 250,000 dekatherms per day (Dth/d) of incremental firm transportation service to one shipper, Virginia Power Services Energy Corp. Transco states that the project will involve the construction and operation of 4.33 miles of new 24-inch diameter pipeline facilities, 21,830 horsepower of gas turbine driven compression, 25,000 horsepower of electric motor driven compression and the construction or modification of associated above-ground and underground facilities. The cost of the project will be approximately $190.8 million.

Within 90 days of this April 1 notice, the commission staff will either: complete its environmental assessment (EA) and place it into the public record for this proceeding; or issue a Notice of Schedule for Environmental Review. If a Notice of Schedule for Environmental Review is issued, it will indicate, among other milestones, the anticipated date for the commission staff’s issuance of the final environmental impact statement (FEIS) or EA for this proposal.

Virginia Electric and Power d/b/a Dominion Virginia Power made it official March 26 on its next big gas-fired power plant, announcing that the company is proposing to build the Greensville project. The station, which would cost more than $1 billion, would be a combined-cycle facility consisting of three gas-fired combustion turbines and a steam turbine, said Dominion in the March 26 announcement. Pending regulatory approval, the station would create more than 1,000 jobs at the peak of construction and be operational in 2019 to meet projected demand growth. The station will have about 45 full-time employees.

“We are proposing to construct the largest and most efficient natural-gas fueled power station in Virginia to bring our customers reliable, low-cost energy,” said David Christian, chief executive officer for Dominion Generation, which, like Virginia Electric and Power, is a unit of Dominion Resources (NYSE: D).

The company plans to submit its application for a Certificate of Public Convenience and Necessity to the Virginia State Corporation Commission (SCC) in July. Construction would begin in mid 2016, subject to SCC and environmental approvals.

The company selected the Greensville site because of its proximity to transmission and natural gas lines, water supply, railroads and major highways. The station would be served by the Transco natural gas line that is being extended to the site and the proposed Atlantic Coast Pipeline that will cross the station property when that pipeline is built. This will improve operational reliability by providing flexibility and redundancy in procuring the station’s fuel supply.

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.