EQT is in the middle of discussions to sell some or all of its capacity on the now-stalled Mountain Valley natural gas pipeline, perhaps by Dec. 31, Kallanish Energy reports.
EQT CFO David Khani said his company is in “constructive conversations” with up to five different unnamed parties to sell its contracted capacity in the 303-mile pipeline that is expected to begin service next year.
It would carry natural gas from the Marcellus and Utica shales to markets in Virginia and the Carolinas.
He made the statement last week in an earnings call with analysts and the media.
A deal or deals is not dependent on the pipeline being in service and “the viability of executing a transaction continues to improve,” Khani said.
He said that any deals would be “a very important financial catalyst for the company,” according to a transcript of the call.
Khani indicated that some interested parties had previously been involved in the Atlantic Coast natural gas pipeline that was scrapped last July.
The companies involved on that $8 billion, 600-mile pipeline were Dominion Energy, Duke Energy, Piedmont Natural gas and the Southern Company Gas.
EQT, the No. 1 producer of natural gas in the United States, had earlier said that it was interested in selling some or all of its MVP capacity.
It has curtailed production and said it has no immediate plans to significantly boost natural gas production with low prices so it doesn’t need its full MVP capacity.
A federal appeals court has blocked construction from resuming on the pipeline in West Virginia and Virginia.
That order came on Oct. 16 from the 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Richmond, Virginia.
The court issued a temporary administrative stay of steam crossing permits had been re-issued on Sept. 25 by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.
The halt will remain in place until the appeals court can consider a full stay that was sought earlier by environmental groups.
On Oct. 9, the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission had also given its approval for construction to resume except for a 25-mile segment in the Jefferson National Forest in western Virginia.
Mountain Valley Pipeline LLC still needs a permit from the U.S. Forest Service to complete the natural gas pipeline. That permit is expected early next year.
Eight environmental groups had asked the appeals court to halt construction on the $5.7 billion pipeline until appeals of the re-issued federal permits can be heard.
Work was halted in October 2019 over legal challenges and permits being rescinded.
The pipeline is 92% complete and should be finished in early 2021, the company has said.
FERC has given the company an additional two years to 2022 to complete the project.
The pipeline is designed to move Marcellus and Utica shale natural gas to markets in Virginia and the Carolinas.
There are also plans to extend the pipeline into North Carolina.
The pipeline is owned by joint-venture partners EQM Midstream Partners, NextEra US Gas Assets, Con Edison Transmission, WGL Midstream, and RGC Midstream.
This post appeared first on Kallanish Energy News.