The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) accepted two oil pipeline tariff amendments aimed at helping to move propane to the Midwest. Both ONEOK North System (ONEOK) and Enterprise TE Products Pipeline Company (Enterprise TE) said they had received requests from shippers for the changes after the start of the alternative dispute resolution (ADR) process initiated by FERC last month to alleviate propane pipeline constraints in Midwestern states.
In the ONEOK case, FERC approved a revised pipeline transportation capacity allocation policy allowing shippers to transfer allocated capacity to other shippers through the end of this month, and to receive credit to their allocation history for barrels moved by replacement shippers. In the Enterprise TE case, the company is extending emergency transportation service of propane to the Midwest region. The company had received requests from third-party shippers to continue propane service to Monee, Illinois, for a period of time beyond the original date on which it intended to terminate the service. The service will continue until canceled or modified by Enterprise TE.
FERC noted it acted quickly on the requests. Chairman Neil Chatterjee announced the ADR process on Nov. 19 and the pertinent parties met on Nov. 25. Both companies filed their requests on Nov. 26 and FERC issued notices Nov. 27, with a shortened comment period that ended Dec. 4.
FERC said it continues to monitor the Midwest propane situation, and the ADR process is continuing.
Sen. Chuck Grassley (R., Iowa) and Joni Ernst (R., Iowa) have been pressing the FERC for action, and Grassley welcomed the latest news.
“The shortage of liquid propane in Iowa has affected people from every corner of the state. Farmers, propane marketers, co-ops and manufacturers all felt pressure from lack of access to liquid propane this harvest season. I’m happy to see FERC has taken this issue seriously and addressed the shortage in a timely manner,” Grassley said.