Oct. 05–Natural gas could begin flowing Saturday in Schuylkill County as Williams puts its Atlantic Sunrise pipeline project into full service.
The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission approved the company’s request to put the system into full service, effective Saturday, according to Christopher L. Stockton, Williams spokesman.
Construction on the Pennsylvania section of the Transco pipeline, which has the largest-volume design capacity for a natural gas pipeline system in the U.S., began in September 2017. The 186-mile Greenfield portion of the pipeline runs through the county and connects the Marcellus gas supplies with markets as far south as Alabama.
Property owners and motorists traveling near the pipeline won’t see anything unusual happening Saturday. Gas will be flowing through the pipeline but it will be out of sight, according to Stockton.
In addition to the piping, the project included two new compressor stations and compressor station modifications in five states. It boosts the design capacity of the Transco pipeline by 1.7 billion cubic feet per day (approximately 12 percent) to 15.8 billion cubic feet per day.
“This project makes the largest-volume pipeline system in the country even larger, further executing on our strategy to connect premier natural gas supply areas with the best markets in the country,” Alan Armstrong, Williams president and chief executive officer, said in a prepared release. “The project is significant for Pennsylvania and natural gas-consuming markets all along the East Coast, alleviating infrastructure bottlenecks and providing millions of consumers direct access to one of the most abundant, cost-effective natural gas supply sources in the country.”
Williams construction manager Lee Bone, of Mobile, Alabama, gave The Republican-Herald a tour of the “Rausch Creek Yard Spread 5” in Tremont last November, where more than 370 people were employed.
“I’m proud of our project team for their focus and carefully executing this complex project in a safe and environmentally responsible manner. Their efforts have truly distinguished this project, positively collaborating with regulators, key stakeholders and communities to overcome challenges and install this critical infrastructure thoughtfully without experiencing any significant injuries or environmental issues. Even in the final months of construction, as some segments of the project area sustained more than 20 inches of rainfall, our teams acted quickly to restore the right-of-way and ensure environmental compliance requirements were met,” Williams Chief Operating Officer Micheal Dunn added.
The company will be returning to the county in the spring.
“We are going to do follow-up work next spring to make sure revegetation is happening properly across the project. We will also be removing some of the erosion control devices next spring and addressing any soil settling issues that may come to light after the winter,” Stockton said Thursday.
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