Tractebel moving ahead on Calypso pipeline

The US$500-million, 24-in diameter, 144-km long, pipeline will transport upwards of 830MMcf/d of regasified LNG from a terminal at Freeport, Bahamas, to Port Everglades in Florida. The pipeline route, seen as particularly controversial over the 9.3km onshore section in Florida, traverses water depths of up to 800m, and will be directionally-drilled for the Florida shore approach. Tractebel Electricity and Gas purchased the project last November for $11 million from a bankruptcy court handling the Enron case in Houston.

However, two other organizations are keen to provide Florida with regasified LNG from the Bahamas. One of these is US-based AES with its Ocean Cay pipeline project. This is planned to originate at a 90-ha man-made island near Bimini, where an LNG storage depot would be established. A 24-in, 112-km long, pipeline would be constructed, also to Port Everglades in Florida, with a capacity of around 800MMcf/d of gas. As with the Calypso project, a 2004 startup date is proposed, following construction this year.

The third project is El Paso’s Seafarer pipeline from a new LNG facility at High Rock on Grand Bahama to West Palm Beach in Florida and onwards to the Martin electricity-gereration plant near Indiantown. This 26-in line would have an 185km subsea section, and a 76km onshore section in the US. This is an even-more controversial project than the above-mentioned two, and is generating vociferous local opposition.

In Florida, all three would connect with Florida Gas Transmission’s pipeline network, which is jointly owned by El Paso and Enron.

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