Energy Transfer Partners L.P. (ETP) — a natural gas and propane gas master limited partnership (MLP) — announced that the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) has permitted it to build and operate a 175-mile natural gas pipeline serving the Haynesville Shale and Bossier Sands producing region in Louisiana and East Texas.

Known as the Tiger Pipeline, the 42-inch diameter loop will connect Energy Transfer’s existing pipeline system near Carthage, Texas, extend through the Haynesville Shale, and end near Delhi, Louisiana, interconnecting to at least seven interstate pipelines at different locations in Louisiana. It is estimated that the project will cost roughly $1–1.2 billion.

Energy Transfer expects the Tiger Pipeline to begin service by the first half of 2011 with an initial capacity of 2 billion cubic feet per day (Bcf/d) that may be increased up to 2.4 Bcf/d by the second half of the year. The partnership has entered into long-term firm transportation pacts ranging from 10-15 years with natural gas players Chesapeake Energy Corp. (CHK) and EnCana Corp. (ECA), for 100% of the pipeline capacity.

The Tiger Pipeline is part of Energy Transfer’s efforts to build critical infrastructure that could provide takeaway capacity from the emerging Haynesville Shale natural gas play in Louisiana, connecting to its existing pipeline system near Carthage, Texas.

Dallas, Texas-based Energy Transfer Partners is a master limited partnership engaged primarily in two businesses: 1) the gathering, processing, storage and transportation of natural gas, and 2) and the distribution of propane.
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