Spectra Spreads New England Pipeline Access

Zacks Equity Research

Texas-based Spectra Energy Corporation (SE) and master limited partnership Spectra Energy Partners (SEP) have announced plans to expand two existing pipeline systems in the Northeast United States to connect prolific natural gas supplies with demanding markets in the New England states and Maritime provinces.

The Atlantic Bridge project is a proposed expansion of its Algonquin Gas Transmission and Maritimes & Northeast Pipeline systems. Spectra Energy has teamed up with Until Corporation, a natural gas distribution company with operations in Massachusetts, New Hampshire and Maine. Until Corporation will serve as the anchor shipper in the project.

Spectra Energy’s announcement corresponds with the commencement of an open season to create ample room for other customers to join the project for additional natural gas expected to come online by 2017. Depending on the additional market requirements across the region, the expansion is likely to boost the pipeline capacity by 100,000 to over 600,000 dekatherms of natural gas per day.

As a major portion of the Atlantic Bridge project’s construction is likely to take place within existing rights-of-way and at company-owned facilities, it will have negligible impact on landowners, communities and the environment.

The project is scheduled to be commissioned by Nov 2017. Based on shipper requests, it may consider additional commitments for 2018. The incremental supply will help in keeping the overall prices lower as well as generate savings or homeowners, manufacturers and businesses.

Spectra Energy carries a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold). However, there are other stocks in the oil and gas sector – NGL Energy Partners LP (NGL) and Cabot Oil & Gas Corporation (COG) – which hold a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy) and are expected to perform better.

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