Southern Star Central Corp. and NextEra US Gas Assets, LLC, an indirect, wholly owned subsidiary of NextEra Energy, Inc. (NEE) today announced the commencement of a binding open season for the Sooner Trails Pipeline project, which is expected to connect new receipt points in Kingfisher, Canadian, Grady, Stephens, Garvin, Carter, and Bryan Counties in Oklahoma to interstate and intrastate pipeline markets in Bryan County, Oklahoma and Lamar County, Texas. The companies also announced the signing of a letter of intent that outlines the potential terms of a joint venture that is expected to construct and own the Sooner Trails Pipeline. Under the letter of intent, each company would own 50 percent of the proposed joint venture. An affiliate of NextEra Energy would construct the project and Southern Star, through one or more of its affiliates, would operate the gas pipeline.
Subject to Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) approval, the approximately 250 mile Sooner Trails Pipeline project will extend from Kingfisher County, Oklahoma and travel southeast to its primary delivery point in Lamar County, Texas with the development of the Lamar Hub. The Sooner Trails Pipeline is expected to provide up to 1.2 million dekatherms per day (Dth/d) and offer timely, cost-effective access to natural gas for expanding local distribution companies, industrial users, natural gas fired generation, and other regional demands. The Sooner Trails Pipeline will be developed under FERC jurisdiction. Sooner Trails has filed to begin the FERC pre-filing process in order to develop the project in a timely manner.
"The Sooner Trails Pipeline project will help alleviate constraints associated with the rapid development of natural gas from the SCOOP and STACK production plays and offer supply diversity to meet growing demand for clean, efficient natural gas in the region," said Jerry Morris, president and chief executive officer of Southern Star Central Corp.
"This is another exciting opportunity to invest in a high-quality natural gas pipeline that we expect to be fully contracted," said TJ Tuscai, chief executive officer of NextEra US Gas Assets. "We expect the new Sooner Trails Pipeline route to support the physical takeaway capability and production growth in the SCOOP and STACK plays and provide new markets for shippers and producers across the region."
Southern Star invites parties interested in firm transportation capacity on the Sooner Trails Pipeline to submit binding bids between 9:00 AM Central Clock Time (CCT) on August 20, 2015 and 4:00 PM CCT on September 18, 2015.
The binding bid(s) received during this open season will assist Southern Star and NextEra Energy in determining whether to pursue the proposed project and defining the final parameters of such project. If it is decided to move forward after evaluating the binding bids, Southern Star and NextEra Energy will, subject to FERC approval, install the necessary facilities to serve all or a portion of the requested capacity. If a binding open season is successful, Southern Star and NextEra Energy anticipate service provided through the proposed pipeline in early 2018.
Additional information regarding the project may be obtained by contacting Philip Rullman at (270) 852-4440 or Jim Neukam at (270) 852-4665. Interested parties may access Open Season information at: www.soonertrailspipeline.com under the "Open Season" tab.