UNITED STATES OF AMERICA

DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY

OFFICE OF FOSSIL ENERGY







ST. LAWRENCE GAS COMPANY, INC.

FE DOCKET NO. 98-102-NG








ORDER GRANTING BLANKET AUTHORIZATION

TO IMPORT NATURAL GAS FROM CANADA












DOE/FE ORDER NO. 1449







DECEMBER 28, 1998




I. DESCRIPTION OF REQUEST

On December 23, 1998, St. Lawrence Gas Company, Inc. (St. Lawrence) 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, requesting retroactive blanket authorization to import up to a maximum of 16.3 billion cubic feet of natural gas from Canada for two years beginning on July 26, 1998.(2) St. Lawrence, a natural gas distribution company serving customers in St. Lawrence County in northern New York, has its principal place of business in Massena, New York. The requested authorization does not involve the construction of new pipeline facilities.

II. FINDING

The application filed by St. Lawrence has been evaluated to determine if the proposed import 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 importation of natural gas from 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 St. Lawrence to import natural gas from 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.

ORDER

Pursuant to section 3 of the Natural Gas Act, it is ordered that:

A. St. Lawrence Gas Company, Inc. (St. Lawrence) is authorized to import from Canada up to a maximum of 16.3 billion cubic feet of natural gas over a two-year term beginning on July 26, 1998, and ending on July 25, 2000. The gas may be imported at any United States/Canada border point.

B. With respect to the natural gas imports authorized by this Order, St. Lawrence shall file with the Office of Natural Gas & Petroleum Import and Export Activities, Fossil Energy, within 30 days following each calendar quarter, quarterly reports indicating whether imports of natural gas have been made. If no imports have been made, a report of "no activity" for that calendar quarter must be filed. If imports have occurred, St. Lawrence must report total monthly volumes in Mcf and the average purchase price per MMBtu at the international border. The reports shall also provide the details of each import transaction, including: (1) the name of the seller(s); (2) the name of the purchaser(s); (3) the estimated or actual duration of the agreement(s); (4) the name of the U.S. transporter(s); (5) the point(s) of entry; (6) the geographic market(s) served (by State); (7) whether sales are being made on an interruptible or firm basis; and, if applicable, (8) the per unit (MMBtu) demand/commodity/reservation charge breakdown of the contract price.

C. The first quarterly report required by Ordering Paragraph B of this Order is due not later than January 30, 1999, and should cover the period from October 1, 1998, until the end of the fourth calendar quarter, December 31, 1998.

D. The quarterly reports required by Ordering Paragraph B 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.

Issued in Washington, D.C., on December 28, 1998.


__________________________
John W. Glynn
Manager, Natural Gas Regulation
Office of Natural Gas & Petroleum
Import and Export Activities
Office of Fossil Energy

1. 15 U.S.C. § 717b

2. St. Lawrence's previous blanket import authorization, granted by DOE/FE Order No. 1190 dated July 26, 1996 (1 FE ¶ 71,291), as amended by DOE/FE Order No. 1190-A dated July 11, 1997 (1 FE ¶ 71,427), expired on July 25, 1998. St. Lawrence stated it had inadvertently failed to file for new import authority in a timely manner and requested the new import authorization be effective on July 26, 1998.