LNG Pipelines Expands

Spectra Energy of Houston, Texas, has announced Tuesday that it will expand capacity of its Algonquin Pipeline and Maritimes and Northeast Pipeline to resolve pipeline constraint problems and to lower natural gas prices. The 1 billion cubic feet per day expansion will take place on the pipelines' existing footprints, and is expected to be complete by winter 2016.

Robert Godfrey, spokesperson for Save Passamaquoddy Bay, a 3-nation alliance of US, Passamaquoddy, and Canadian citizens based in Eastport, Maine, says of the announcement, "Spectra's announcement trumps the ten-year-long proposed Downeast LNG project in Robbinston, Maine, that still hasn't completed its permitting. The announced pipeline expansion is double the capacity that proposed by Downeast LNG. Plus, Spectra's plan eliminates the need for new pipelines; they'll simply expand existing pipelines. Whereas, Downeast LNG was trying to woo New England governors to construct a new pipeline to ship natural gas to Downeast LNG — with all the environmental impacts and eminent domain that would entail.

"The announced Spectra Energy pipeline expansions are even due to be finished three years before Downeast LNG's hoped-for completion year," Godfrey continued. "Downeast LNG started out six years too late for the existing market at that time. Downeast LNG is once again years behind the natural gas market curve, trumped by existing Northeast pipeline projects," Godfrey concluded.