Access Northeast Project, New England, United States of America

Access NE

The Access Northeast Project proposes the upgrade of the existing Algonquin gas transmission pipeline, and construction of associated liquefied natural gas (LNG) storage facilities in New England, US.

The project will increase Algonquin's natural gas transmission capacity by an additional 925,000 dekatherms a day (Dth/d), which is sufficient for the generation of 5,000MW of electricity.

The project developer is Access Northeast, a joint venture (JV) of Eversource Energy, National Grid, Spectra Energy, and Spectra Energy Partners.

"The project will increase Algonquin's natural gas transmission capacity by an additional 925,000 dekatherms a day."

The certificate application for the project is expected to be filed with the US Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) in late-2016 and the final approval for the project is expected in early-2018. Construction works are expected to commence in mid-2018 and the project is anticipated to be commissioned in late-2018.

The overall investment in the project is estimated to be $3.2bn, which will be solely financed by the developers.

Access Northeast Project benefits

Access Northeast Project is being developed to feed the new power plants in New England, which will replace the electricity generation capacity left void by the recently decommissioned coal and nuclear power plants, including those that are expected to be decommissioned by 2020.

The project will transfer the gas sourced from Mahwah, New Jersey; Ramapo, New York; and Brookfield, Connecticut; to power plants in Connecticut, Rhode Island, Massachusetts and Maine.

The project is expected to offset approximately 3.4 million tonnes of carbon dioxide emissions a year, which is equivalent to removing 650,000 cars off the road. It is also expected to save the region approximately $1bn to 1.2bn a year.

Algonquin gas transmission pipeline upgrade details

Access Northeast Project will primarily involve the replacement of approximately 123.22 miles (198.3km) of existing pipes with larger diameter pipes, modification of seven existing compressor stations, and construction of a new compressor station and a new LNG liquefaction, storage and vaporisation facility.

The new compressor station is proposed to be located in Rehoboth, Bristol County, Massachusetts.

The project will also involve the construction of associated pipeline facilities, including metering and regulating (M&R) stations, launcher / receiver facilities, and valve sites.

Seven M&R stations are also proposed to be modified, while two new M&R stations will be constructed at Acushnet and West Boylston in Massachusetts.

LNG terminal details

Located in Bristol County, Massachusetts, the LNG terminal will be equipped with two LNG storage tanks with a gross combined capacity of 6.8 billion standard cubic feet (Bscf), a dual train liquefaction facility with a capacity of 54MMscfd, and regasification facilities.

A new permanent access road connecting with the Peckham Road will serve the LNG terminal.

Key players involved

The key contractors involved with the project include SGC Engineering for the civil survey of the pipeline, Hatch Mott MacDonald for the design and engineering of the pipeline facilities, Tibbetts Engineering for the civil survey of the LNG Facility, and CH-IV International for the front-end engineering and design of the LNG facility.

TRC Environmental has been contracted to prepare the environmental resource reports for the project, while Public Archaeological Laboratory has been contracted to prepare the cultural resource reports, Trinity Consultants has been contracted to prepare the air quality permit applications, and Hoover & Keith is performing the noise impact studies.