National Fuel Gas Supply Corporation (“Supply”) and Empire Pipeline, Inc. (“Empire”), the operating companies that make up the Pipeline and Storage segment of National Fuel Gas Company (NYSE: NFG) (“National Fuel”), have announced the beginning of two Open Seasons, making firm transportation capacity available from the Marcellus Shale formation in the central and southwestern producing regions of Pennsylvania. “We are pleased to continue to offer the necessary pipeline infrastructure and transportation services so vitally needed by the companies producing natural gas from the Marcellus Shale formation,” said Ronald J. Tanski, National Fuel’s President and Chief Operating Officer. “Empire’s Tioga County Extension projects will help meet the demands of Marcellus producers in central and eastern Pennsylvania by providing significant additional capacity out of the area to high value markets in New England, Canada and at the Dawn hub. The continued enhancement of Supply’s existing infrastructure in southwestern Pennsylvania provides a unique opportunity to serve those Marcellus producers by moving their production to the expanding east coast and mid-Atlantic markets. We are confident that both projects will be well-received and look forward to developing these projects to better serve customers.” Empire’s Open Season 008 offers capacity in Empire’s Tioga County Extension Phase 2 Project (“TCE2”), which is being designed to provide approximately 260,000 Dth per day of incremental firm transportation from producer interconnections in Pennsylvania’s Bradford and Tioga counties, as well as from prospective interconnections with the Tennessee Gas Pipeline (“TGP”) 300 Line and the proposed Penn Virginia Resources Midstream (“PVR”) pipeline in Tioga and Lycoming counties. This transportation capacity would provide access to diverse markets at several Empire delivery points, including Empire’s existing interconnection with TransCanada Pipeline at Chippawa, its planned interconnection with the TGP 200 Line near Rochester, New York, and its existing interconnection with Millennium Pipeline at Corning, New York.
The TCE2 project facilities would include two new compressor stations, approximately 25 miles of 24-inch or 30-inch high-pressure pipeline, and other enhancements along Empire’s existing system. The new high-pressure pipeline would begin at a new interconnection with the TGP 300 Line and/or an interconnection with the proposed PVR pipeline, and would extend north to Jackson Township, Pennsylvania, where it would connect with the 24-inch pipeline that Empire expects to construct in 2011 as part of its previously announced Tioga County Extension Phase 1 Project (“TCE1”). TCE1, which was the subject of Empire Open Season 006, is being designed to provide 350,000 Dth per day of incremental transportation capacity from Jackson Township, Pennsylvania, to Empire’s interconnect with TransCanada Pipeline at Chippawa. Empire filed its FERC 7(c) application for the TCE1 project on August 26, 2010, and service is expected to commence September 1, 2011. Empire has executed precedent agreements with anchor shippers Shell Energy North America (US) L.P., and Talisman Energy USA Inc., and the capacity is fully subscribed.Depending on final facility design and Open Season awards, TCE2 would also provide significant short-haul capacity from the Pennsylvania producing area to Millennium Pipeline at Corning, New York. Empire expects that TCE2 could be placed in service as early as September 1, 2013. Supply’s Open Season 167 offers an additional 45,000 Dth per day of transportation capacity in conjunction with its previously announced Line N Phase II expansion project. The final facility design has made this additional capacity available, from receipt points at new and existing producer interconnects along Supply’s Line N system in Pennsylvania’s Greene, Washington and Beaver counties to a delivery point at Supply’s proposed interconnection with Texas Eastern Transmission Corporation at Holbrook Station in Greene County, Pennsylvania. Supply’s Line N Phase II facilities would include additional compression at its Buffalo Station, along with approximately six miles of pipeline replacement in Washington County, Pennsylvania. The Line N Phase II project, which would have a total maximum capacity of 195,000 Dth per day, is currently supported by Range Resources Appalachia, LLC (“Range”), which has executed a Precedent Agreement for 150,000 Dth per day.
Supply filed its FERC 7(c) application on June 11, 2010, for the Line N Phase I expansion project, which is being designed to provide 160,000 Dth per day of incremental transportation capacity. This project is fully subscribed and has a projected in-service date of September 1, 2011.National Fuel is an integrated energy company with $5.1 billion in assets comprised of the following four operating segments: Exploration and Production, Pipeline and Storage, Utility, and Energy Marketing. Additional information about National Fuel is available on its website at investor.nationalfuelgas.com or through its investor information service at 1-800-334-2188. Certain statements contained herein, including those that are identified by the use of the words “anticipates,” “estimates,” “expects,” “forecasts,” “intends,” “plans,” “predicts,” “projects,” “believes,” “seeks,” “will,” “may” and similar expressions, are “forward-looking statements” as defined by the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Forward-looking statements involve risks and uncertainties, which could cause actual results or outcomes to differ materially from those expressed in the forward-looking statements. The Company’s expectations, beliefs and projections contained herein are expressed in good faith and are believed to have a reasonable basis, but there can be no assurance that such expectations, beliefs or projections will result or be achieved or accomplished. In addition to other factors, the following are important factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from those discussed in the forward-looking statements: financial and economic conditions, including the availability of credit, and their effect on the Company’s ability to obtain financing on acceptable terms for working capital, capital expenditures and other investments; occurrences affecting the Company’s ability to obtain financing under credit lines or other credit facilities or through the issuance of commercial paper, other short-term notes or debt or equity securities, including any downgrades in the Company’s credit ratings and changes in interest rates and other capital market conditions; changes in economic conditions, including global, national or regional recessions, and their effect on the demand for, and customers’ ability to pay for, the Company’s products and services; the creditworthiness or performance of the Company’s key suppliers, customers and counterparties; economic disruptions or uninsured losses resulting from terrorist activities, acts of war, major accidents, fires, hurricanes, other severe weather, or other natural disasters; changes in the availability and/or price of natural gas, and the effect of such changes on natural gas production levels; significant differences between projected and actual natural gas production levels; uncertainty of natural gas reserve estimates; inability to obtain or retain sufficient customers or commitments for planned projects; factors affecting the Company’s ability to complete expansion projects as planned, including among others geography, weather conditions, shortages or unavailability of equipment and services required in construction operations, unanticipated project delays or changes in project costs or plans, and the need to obtain governmental approvals and permits and comply with environmental laws and regulations; changes in laws and regulations to which the Company is subject, including energy, environmental, tax, safety and employment laws and regulations; governmental/regulatory actions, initiatives and proceedings, including those involving expansion projects, financings, rate cases, affiliate relationships, industry structure, and environmental/safety requirements; significant changes in the Company’s relationship with its employees or contractors and the potential adverse effects if labor disputes, grievances or shortages were to occur; or the cost and effects of legal and administrative claims against the Company. The Company disclaims any obligation to update any forward-looking statements to reflect events or circumstances after the date hereof.