[Federal Register Volume 81, Number 56 (Wednesday, March 23, 2016)]
[Rules and Regulations]
[Pages 15431-15432]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2016-06510]


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DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY

Federal Energy Regulatory Commission

18 CFR Part 284

[Docket No. RM96-1-039; Order No. 587-X]


Standards for Business Practices of Interstate Natural Gas 
Pipelines

AGENCY: Federal Energy Regulatory Commission.

ACTION:  Final rule; order on rehearing.

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SUMMARY: In Order No. 587-W, the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission 
(Commission) amended its regulations to incorporate by reference the 
latest version (Version 3.0) of seven business practice standards 
applicable to interstate natural gas pipelines adopted by the Wholesale 
Gas Quadrant of the North American Energy Standards Board. Among other 
matters in that order, the Commission revised the information filed in 
interstate natural gas pipelines' Index of Customers to reflect the use 
of the pipelines' proprietary point codes, and made conforming changes 
in other posting regulations. In this order, the Commission grants 
rehearing and corrects its regulation regarding the use of point codes 
in postings of interruptible transportation.

DATES: Changes to regulatory text will become effective April 22, 2016.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:
Stanley Wolf (technical issues), Office of Energy Policy and 
Innovation, Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, 888 First Street NE., 
Washington, DC 20426,Telephone: (202) 502-6841, Email: 
[email protected].
Oscar F. Santillana (technical issues), Office of Energy Market 
Regulation, Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, 888 First Street NE., 
Washington, DC 20426,Telephone: (202) 502-6392, Email: 
[email protected],
Gary D. Cohen (legal issues), Office of the General Counsel, Federal 
Energy Regulatory Commission, 888 First Street NE., Washington, DC 
20426, Telephone: (202) 502-8321, Email: [email protected].

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: 

Order Granting Rehearing Order No. 587-X

    1. In this order, in response to requests for rehearing by the 
Interstate Natural Gas Association of America (INGAA) and Southern Star 
Central Gas Pipeline, Inc. (Southern Star), the Commission grants 
rehearing of Order No. 587-W, the Commission's Final Rule issued in 
this proceeding on October 16, 2015,\1\ and revises section 
284.13(b)(2)(iv) of the Commission's regulations regarding the posting 
of receipt and delivery points for interruptible transportation.
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    \1\ Standards for Business Practices of Interstate Natural Gas 
Pipelines; Coordination of the Scheduling Process of Interstate 
Natural Gas Pipelines and Public Utilities, Order No. 587-W, 80 FR 
67302 (Nov. 2, 2015), FERC Stats. & Regs. ] 31,373 (2015).
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I. Background

    2. In Order No. 587-W, the Commission amended its regulations to 
incorporate by reference the latest version (Version 3.0) of seven 
business practice standards applicable to interstate natural gas 
pipelines adopted by the Wholesale Gas Quadrant (WGQ) of the North 
American Energy Standards Board (NAESB). As relevant here, the Version 
3.0 standards revised the codes used to identify receipt and delivery 
locations in the Index of Customers. Prior to Version 3.0, the postings 
required the pipelines to use an industry common code to refer to 
individual receipt and delivery points. Version 3.0 revised this 
requirement to require the pipelines to use their own proprietary point 
codes for receipt and delivery points and to post additional 
information about these points on the pipelines' internet Web sites.\2\ 
Due to the adoption of proprietary point codes, the Commission revised 
its regulations at 18 CFR 157.14, 157.18, 260.8, and 284.13 to refer to 
the same proprietary

[[Page 15432]]

location point names as used in the NAESB WGQ Version 3.0 Standards.
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    \2\ 18 CFR 284.13(f), as added in Order No. 587-W, states: 
Location codes. An interstate pipeline must maintain a posting on 
its publicly available Internet Web site of the pipeline's location 
names and codes for all current and inactive receipt and delivery 
points on its system, including, for each point: Direction of flow, 
the location of the point, the location zone if such exists, the 
Commission company identification code (CID), if any, of the 
upstream and/or downstream entity, the location type, the current 
status as active and inactive, and the date(s) the point becomes 
active or inactive. The pipeline must provide the information in 
downloadable file formats, in conformity with the requirements of 18 
CFR 284.12 of this chapter.
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    3. In comments on the Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NOPR), 
Southern Star and INGAA pointed out that the Commission in the NOPR had 
failed to make conforming changes to certain regulations, including, as 
relevant here, the regulations requiring posting of interruptible 
transportation at 18 CFR 284.13(b)(2)(iv). Based on the regulatory text 
proposed by Southern Star, the Commission revised this regulation to 
require pipelines to post: ``[t]he receipt and delivery points and the 
zones or segments covered by the contract, including the location name 
and code adopted by the pipeline in conformance with paragraph (f) of 
this section for each point, zone or segment.'' (Emphasis added.)
    4. After the issuance of Order No. 587-W, both Southern Star and 
INGAA filed separate requests for rehearing, challenging the inclusion 
of the phrase ``covered by the contract'' in the regulation. They argue 
that the regulatory text adopted for posting of interruptible 
transportation promulgated in 18 CFR 284.13(b)(2)(iv) did not correctly 
reflect the Commission's determination in Order No. 637-A that the 
postings for interruptible transportation should not refer to points 
covered by the contract, but rather to the points over which the 
shipper is permitted to transport natural gas.\3\ INGAA contends the 
Commission rejected that contract-covered language in Order No. 637, 
because that language implied that receipt or delivery points should be 
those in the pro forma or master contracts, rather than the points in 
the subsequent agreement to provide interruptible service.
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    \3\ Regulation of Short-Term Natural Gas Transportation Services 
and Regulations of Interstate Natural Gas Transportation Services, 
Order No. 637. FERC Stats. & Regs. ] 31,091, clarified, Order No. 
637-A, FERC Stats. & Regs. ] 31,099, reh'g denied, Order No. 637-B, 
92 FERC ] 61,062 (2000), aff'd in part and remanded in part sub nom. 
Interstate Natural Gas Ass'n of America v. FERC, 285 F.3d 18 (D.C. 
Cir. 2002), order on remand, 101 FERC ] 61,127 (2002), order on 
reh'g, 106 FERC ] 61,088 (2004), aff'd sub nom. American Gas Ass'n 
v. FERC, 428 F.3d 255 (D.C. Cir. 2005).
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II. Discussion

    5. We grant rehearing, concluding that the language we adopted in 
Order No. 587-W incorrectly includes the ``covered by the contract'' 
language that does not reflect how pipelines arrange for and schedule 
interruptible service. In Order No. 637-A, the Commission recognized 
that shippers obtaining interruptible service frequently execute pro 
forma master contracts for interruptible service, but do not specify 
the price or the receipt and delivery points until nominations are 
made. The Commission, therefore, removed the requirement to post the 
receipt and delivery points ``covered by the contract'' from the 
posting requirements, so that pipelines will post the actual points 
used for transporting natural gas:

    This language [covered by the contract] implies that the receipt 
or delivery points should be those in the master contract, rather 
than the points in the subsequent agreement to provide interruptible 
service. Section 284.13(b)(2)(iv) will be revised to require the 
posting of the receipt and delivery points over which the shipper is 
entitled to transport gas at the rate charged to make clear that the 
pipeline should post the receipt and delivery points in each 
individual agreement to provide interruptible service, not simply 
the receipt and delivery points in the master contract.\4\
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    \4\ Order No. 637-A, FERC Stats. & Regs. ] 31,099 at 31,619-20.
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    6. Accordingly, we will grant rehearing and revise the regulatory 
text to require pipelines to post the receipt and delivery points 
between which the shipper is entitled to transport gas at the rate 
charged, including the location name and code adopted by the pipeline 
in conformance with paragraph (f) of the section for each point, zone, 
or segment.
    7. The Paperwork Reduction Act (PRA) provides that an agency may 
not conduct or sponsor the collection of information unless the agency 
has published an estimate of the burden that shall result from the 
information collection in advance of adopting or revising such 
collection. Agency rules that require information collection are 
subject to review and approval by the Office of Management and Budget 
(OMB), in accordance with the requirements of the PRA. The reporting 
requirements imposed in Order No. 587-W (Docket No. RM96-1-038) were 
submitted to and approved (on December 9, 2015) by OMB.\5\ The 
revisions made in this Order merely clarify those reporting 
requirements and are not expected to modify the burden estimates. This 
Order will be submitted to OMB for information only.
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    \5\ FERC-545 (Gas Pipeline Rates: Rate Change (Non-Formal)) is 
covered under OMB Control No. 1902-0154, and FERC-549C (Standards 
for Business Practices of Interstate Natural Gas Pipelines) is 
covered under 1902-0174.
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List of Subjects in 18 CFR Part 284

    Incorporation by reference, Natural gas, Reporting and 
recordkeeping requirements.

    By the Commission.
    Issued: March 17, 2016.
Nathaniel J. Davis, Sr.,
Deputy Secretary.

    In consideration of the foregoing, the Commission amends part 284, 
chapter I, title 18, Code of Federal Regulations, as follows:

PART 284--CERTAIN SALES AND TRANSPORTATION OF NATURAL GAS UNDER THE 
NATURAL GAS POLICY ACT OF 1978 AND RELATED AUTHORITIES

0
1. The authority citation for part 284 continues to read as follows:

    Authority: 15 U.S.C. 717-717z, 3301-3432; 42 U.S.C. 7101-7352; 
43 U.S.C. 1331-1356.


0
2. Section 284.13 is amended by revising paragraph (b)(2)(iv) to read 
as follows:


Sec.  284.13  Reporting requirements for interstate pipelines.

* * * * *
    (b) * * *
    (2) * * *
    (iv) The receipt and delivery points between which the shipper is 
entitled to transport gas at the rate charged, including the location 
name and code adopted by the pipeline in conformance with paragraph (f) 
of this section for each point, zone, or segment;
* * * * *
[FR Doc. 2016-06510 Filed 3-22-16; 8:45 am]
 BILLING CODE 6717-01-P