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WBI Energy’s pipeline expansion project

Published by
World Pipelines,

WBI Energy, Inc., the pipeline and midstream subsidiary of MDU Resources Group, Inc. MDU, has announced plans to build an approximately 38 mile pipeline with the primary purpose of delivering natural gas supply to eastern North Dakota and far western Minnesota. An open season seeking capacity commitments on WBI Energy's Valley expansion project was initiated on 13 June, and will be open until 15 July. WBI Energy has received significant interest in the project from its customers in the region, which has driven the project.

The proposed pipeline would connect the Viking Gas Transmission Company pipeline near Felton, Minnesota, to WBI Energy's existing pipeline near Mapleton, North Dakota. Cost of the expansion project is estimated at US$50 million.

"The Valley Expansion Project will provide another source of natural gas to help fuel industrial and commercial growth in the area, and will greatly enhance supply security for existing end users in eastern North Dakota and western Minnesota," said David L. Goodin, President and CEO of MDU Resources.

North Dakota Gov. Jack Dalrymple for several years has been a proponent of bringing more natural gas supply to the Red River Valley. Dalrymple stated: "A project like the Valley expansion is, frankly, a long time coming, and I congratulate WBI Energy for its commitment to making it happen. This project will encourage continued growth in eastern North Dakota. Whether it's industrial and commercial facilities, new natural gas fired electric generation plants or even taps to local farmers for drying grain, I expect we will see numerous benefits from this expansion in this important area of our state."

As initially designed, the pipeline will be able to transport 40 million ft3/d of natural gas. With minor enhancements, it will be able to transport significantly more product if required, based on capacity requested during the open season or as needed in the future as the region's needs grow. WBI Energy has begun the process of identifying a route for the project and, once the necessary permitting and regulatory work is completed, construction could begin in early 2018 with completion expected late that same year. The pipeline, from permitting through construction and operation, will be under the jurisdiction of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC), similar to the existing WBI Energy pipeline system.

"We're excited to announce this project and to be a part of growth efforts and increased supply reliability in the region," said Martin A. Fritz, President and CEO of WBI Energy. "From the Valley expansion project in the east to our multiple system expansions this year in northwestern North Dakota, our team is committed to meeting the needs of our customers through increased natural gas transportation capacity. The upcoming open season will help us secure capacity commitments for the Valley expansion project and will initiate the process for obtaining the necessary permits and regulatory approvals. We're looking forward to proceeding with this important project."

Edited from source by Stephanie Roker

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