THE MONTANA POWER TRADING & MARKETING COMPANY
FE DOCKET NO. 98-36-NG
I. DESCRIPTION OF REQUEST
On MAY 21, 1998, The Montana Power Trading & Marketing Company (MPTM) filed an application with the Office of Fossil Energy of the Department of Energy (DOE), under section 3 of the Natural Gas Act (NGA)(1) and DOE Delegation Order Nos. 0204-111 and 0204-127, for blanket authorization to export up to 30 Bcf of natural gas to Canada. The authorization would be for a two-year term beginning on the date of first delivery. MPTM is a Montana corporation with its principal place of business in Butte, Montana. MPTM plans to export the natural gas under short-term and spot market arrangements on its own behalf or on behalf of others. The proposed authorization does not involve the construction of new pipeline facilities.
The application filed by MPTM has been evaluated to determine if the proposed export arrangement meets the public interest requirement of section 3 of the NGA, as amended by section 201 of the Energy Policy Act of 1992 (Pub. L. 102-486). Under section 3(c), the export of natural gas from or to a nation with which there is in effect a free trade agreement requiring national treatment for trade in natural gas, is deemed to be consistent with the public interest and must be granted without modification or delay. The authorization sought by MPTM to export natural gas to Canada, a nation with which a free trade agreement is in effect, meets the section 3(c) criterion and, therefore, is consistent with the public interest. This blanket order authorizes transactions under contracts with terms of no longer than two years.
Pursuant to section 3 of the Natural Gas Act, it is ordered that:
A. The Montana Power Trading & Marketing Company (MPTM) is authorized to export up to 30 Bcf of natural gas to Canada over a two-year term beginning on the date of first delivery.
B. This natural gas may be exported at any point on the border between the United States and Canada.
C. Within two weeks after deliveries begin, MPTM shall provide written notification to the Office of Natural Gas & Petroleum Import and Export Activities of the date that the first export of natural gas authorized in Paragraph A above occurred.
D. With respect to the natural gas exports authorized by this Order, MPTM shall file with the Office of Natural Gas & Petroleum Import and Export Activities, within 30 days following each calendar quarter, quarterly reports indicating whether exports of natural gas have been made. Quarterly reports must be filed whether or not initial deliveries have begun. If no imports or exports of natural gas have been made, a report of "no activity" for that calendar quarter must be filed. If exports have occurred, MPTM must report the following: (1) total monthly volumes in Mcf; (2) the average monthly purchase price of gas per MMBtu at the international border; (3) the name of the seller(s); (4) the name of the purchaser(s); (5) the estimated or actual duration of the agreement(s); (6) the name of the U. S. transporter(s); and (7) the point(s) of exit.
E. The notification and reports required by Ordering Paragraphs C and D of this Order shall be filed with the Office of Natural Gas & Petroleum Import and Export Activities, Fossil Energy, Room 3E-042, FE-34, Forrestal Building, 1000 Independence Avenue, S.W., Washington, D.C., 20585.
F. The first quarterly report required by Ordering Paragraph D of this Order is due not later than July 30, 1998, and should cover the period from the date of this Order, until the end of the second calendar quarter, June 30, 1998.
Issued in Washington, D.C., on May 28, 1998.
John W. Glynn
Manager, Natural Gas Regulation
Office of Natural Gas & Petroleum Import and Export Activities
Office of Fossil Energy
1. 1/ 15 U.S.C. § 717b.