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NEW YORK, Nov 16 (Reuters) - Energy producer Dominion (D.N) said Friday it began an open season to gauge interest in allowing its customers increased access to new natural gas supplies from the Rocky Mountain region.
Under its Dominion Hub III project, which could begin service by 2009, existing Dominion Transmission firm transportation customers would be able to move supplies to a planned interconnection with the huge Rockies Express pipeline at Clarington, Ohio, the company said in a statement.
Customers will retain their existing delivery points to move supplies to growing markets in the U.S. Northeast.
A Dominion spokesman said the open season would run through mid-December.
In June, Dominion announced it was the first pipeline to sign firm agreements to move Rockies supplies into east coast markets as part of its Dominion Hub I Project.
The current Hub III Project would allow approximately 300,000 dekatherms (300 million cubic feet) per day of existing entitlements to be transferred to the Clarington interconnect.
Dominion said rates charged would be based on the level of market participation and the final design of the project's facilities.
"The Hub III Project is a win-win proposal for both Dominion customers and Rockies producers. For current customers, the project will provide access to an important source of incremental gas supplies from the growing Rockies basin. For producers, the project will provide access to major liquid Northeast markets as well as to the nation's largest gas storage network," the company said in the statement.
When complete in 2009, the Rockies Express pipeline will be one of the largest natural gas pipelines ever constructed in North America, transporting up to 1.8 billion cubic feet of gas per day from Rockies producers near Rio Blanco County, Colorado to customers in the eastern United States.
Dominion is one of the nation's largest producers and transporters of energy, with approximately 26,500 megawatts of generation, 7,800 miles of natural gas transmission pipeline and 1 trillion cubic feet equivalent of proved natural gas and oil reserves.
Dominion also owns and operates the nation's largest underground natural gas storage system with about 960 bcf of storage capacity, serving retail energy customers in 11 states. (Reporting by Eileen Moustakis; Editing by Marguerita Choy)