Williams Receives FERC Approval to Place Atlantic Sunrise Project into Full Service; Plans to Place Project into Service Oct. 6

Williams today reported that the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) has approved the Company’s request to place its Atlantic Sunrise project into full service. The Company plans to place the project into full service on Oct. 6, 2018.

Backed by long-term shipper commitments, the historic project increases the design capacity of the Transco pipeline, the largest-volume natural gas pipeline system in the United States, by 1.7 billion cubic feet per day (approximately 12 percent) to 15.8 billion cubic feet per day. In the process, the project further strengthens and extends the bi-directional flow of the Transco system, directly connecting Marcellus gas supplies with markets as far south as Alabama.

“This project makes the largest-volume pipeline system in the country even larger, further executing on our strategy to connect premier natural gas supply areas with the best markets in the country,” said Alan Armstrong, Williams president and chief executive officer. “The project is significant for Pennsylvania and natural gas-consuming markets all along the East Coast, alleviating infrastructure bottlenecks and providing millions of consumers direct access to one of the most abundant, cost-effective natural gas supply sources in the country.”

Williams Chief Operating Officer Micheal Dunn added, “I’m proud of our project team for their focus and carefully executing this complex project in a safe and environmentally responsible manner. Their efforts have truly distinguished this project, positively collaborating with regulators, key stakeholders and communities to overcome challenges and install this critical infrastructure thoughtfully without experiencing any significant injuries or environmental issues. Even in the final months of construction, as some segments of the project area sustained more than 20 inches of rainfall, our teams acted quickly to restore the right-of-way and ensure environmental compliance requirements were met.”

Atlantic Sunrise on Track for Service This Summer

Construction is nearing completion on the Atlantic Sunrise pipeline project – a critical expansion of the existing Transco natural gas pipeline to connect abundant Marcellus gas supplies with markets in the Mid-Atlantic and Southeastern U.S.

Full service

Williams reports that the project is targeted for mechanical completion beginning in August, with full service (1.7 billion cubic feet per day) anticipated to commence in the second half of the month. A portion of the mainline component of the project (550 million cubic feet per day) has already been placed into service.

Mechanical completion means that the installation of facilities is complete. However, this does not include final commissioning, which is necessary prior to placing facilities into service. The process of certifying project-related facilities as “mechanically complete” began in June and is expected to be completed in August. The current mechanical completion date is based upon current contractor schedules and may be affected by weather.

What’s next

Final cleanup and right of way restoration work has begun and will continue for the remainder of this year and into 2019. This means cleaning up and restoring the work-area as closely as possible to its original condition.

Greenfield construction on the Pennsylvania portion of the Atlantic Sunrise project began in September 2017. The project has featured the installation of approximately 200 miles of large diameter pipeline, two greenfield compressor stations and compressor station modifications in five states.

Atlantic Sunrise project team raises more than $5,000 for Walk MS: Bloomsburg

Several members of the Atlantic Sunrise project team proudly walked in support of the National Multiple Sclerosis Society April 29 during the Walk MS: Bloomsburg 2018 event.

This annual charitable event raises funds to support critical services and research aimed at discovering a cure for multiple sclerosis.

Atlantic Sunrise team members stepped up in full force mobilizing the Frani’s Fallies team, who ended the event as the top fundraising team, raising more than $5,300 of the nearly $15,000 total during the event — that’s more than one-third!

The Williams Atlantic Sunrise team collected donations from multiple project teams including inspection, construction, project management, land and even landowners in the project area!

Spread supervisor Kelli Bell, whose daughter has progressive MS, said after the walk, “This is what the Atlantic Sunrise Team is all about! Very proud to be part of such an awesome group of people.”

Williams employee recognized for bravery by PA borough council

The Republican Herald reports that Williams employee Tim Reed was recognized April 19 by the Pine Grove Borough Council for his response to an incident he witnessed involving a Pine Grove police officer.

The newspaper reports that while on his way to work on the pipeline in February, Reed witnessed an officer engaged in a struggle with a suspect. Reed, a former Marine, rendered assistance to the officer and remained with him as the suspect was apprehended and arrested. According to the police report, the suspect was under the influence of methamphetamine and was out of control.

Photo courtesy of the Republican Herald used with permission. Tim Reed, center, is honored by Pine Grove Mayor Will Shiffer, right, and Pine Grove Police Chief Thomas Trotter, left.

Reed told the paper, “I’m a Marine and that’s what we do. “I saw it was one-on-one and it was just instinctive to help out.”

Reed was recognized for his bravery Borough Council and received a certificate of appreciation presented by Pine Grove Mayor Will Shiffer and Police Chief Thomas Trotter.

Mayor Shiffer told the paper that it’s the first time since he’s served as mayor that a civilian has assisted a member of law enforcement in that manner.

From the Republican Herald:

“According to Shiffer, the pipeline employees have been good neighbors and have patronized local businesses too. Reed said Williams tries to assist the community and has provided donations to the Pine Grove area.

“We’re all here working and we do our jobs. We try to help out as much as we can and donate to different causes,” he said.

Read the full account of Reed’s heroism here.

$264,300 in Community Grants Benefit First Responders, Schools and Townships in Pennsylvania

A total of 41 Pennsylvania organizations will benefit this spring from $264,300 in funding from Williams through the company’s semiannual Atlantic Sunrise Community Grant program. Williams awarded up to $10,000 to eligible organizations in communities where the Atlantic Sunrise pipeline project is currently being constructed.

One of the 41 recipients is the Borough of Montrose in Susquehanna County, which will use its $5,000 grant to make local park improvements.

“With Williams’ financial support we are going to be making much-needed improvements to Memorial Park,” said Councilman Craig Reimel. “These improvements will increase the park’s usability and ensure it remains a safe place for the entire community.”

Another recipient is the Shamokin Coal Township Public Library in Northumberland County, which will use a grant for $6,000 to support educational STEM programming.

“We plan to use the support from Williams’ community grant to help fund educational programs that will be held at the Shamokin Coal Township Public Library,” said Victoria Ryan, Shamokin Public Library Director

. “We are excited about this grant because we know our community will greatly benefit from the new educational programming.”

Today’s announcement represents the seventh grant award cycle. Williams has announced total awards to 309 organizations of more than $2.2 million across the Atlantic Sunrise project area since the program’s inception in 2015.

This spring’s grant dollars were dispersed in the following broad categories: emergency response ($107,000), education ($64,500) and recreation or community enhancement projects ($92,800).

Spring 2018 Grant Award Recipients:

Clinton County

  • $9,000 to the Pine Creek Township Police Department for the purchase of radio equipment.

Columbia County

  • $3,000 to the Benton Area School District to purchase Ipads for students.
  • $10,000 to the Children’s Museum to support STEM programs.
  • $10,000 to the Boy Scouts of America – Columbia-Montour Council for Trading Post store updates.
  • $10,000 to the Columbia County Covered Bridges Association for covered bridge painting.
  • $3,000 to the Sugarloaf Township EMA to purchase new equipment.
  • $4,300 to the Fishing Creek Sportsmen’s Association for deck replacement.

Lancaster County

  • $10,000 to Quarryville Fire Company Number One to purchase thermal imaging cameras.
  • $5,000 to the Manheim Community Library to support youth STEM and art education.
  • $10,000 to Martic Township to assist with paving the parking lot at Martic Park.
  • $10,000 to the Hempfield Fire Department to purchase equipment for emergency responders.
  • $6,500 to the Library System of Lancaster County to support Summer Reading Educational STEM Programs.
  • $6,000 to the Drumore Township Supervisors to support community park enhancements.
  • $7,500 to the Columbia Public Library Association to assist with computer upgrades.

Lebanon County

  • $10,000 to the Campbelltown Volunteer Fire Company to assist with the purchase of a UTV vehicle.
  • $6,000 to the Lebanon County Conservation District to support the Lebanon County Envirothon.
  • $1,500 to the Palmyra Youth Lacrosse Association to support youth lacrosse in Palmyra.
  • $7,500 to the Community Fire Company of Cornwall Borough to purchase hydraulic rescue tools.
  • $7,500 to the Visit Lebanon Valley DMO to create a guide to promote Lebanon County.

Luzerne County

  • $4,000 to WVIA Public Media to support educational programs.
  • $6,000 to Harveys Lake Borough to purchase new portable radios.
  • $10,000 to Wilkes University to support Women Empowered by Science program.

Lycoming County

  • $5,000 to the Lycoming County 4-H to support youth day camps and livestock kits.
  • $10,000 to the Hughesville Volunteer Fire Department to assist with purchasing a UTV vehicle.

Northumberland County

  • $7,500 to the Rescue Fire Company to purchase SCBA and masks with thermal imaging cameras.
  • $6,000 to the Shamokin Coal Township Public Library to support educational STEM programming.
  • $5,000 to the Boy Scouts of America Susquehanna Council to provide volunteer training.
  • $2,000 to the Shamokin Creek Restoration Alliance to support outdoor education.
  • $5,000 to the Ranshaw Civic Association to support rebuilding the picnic pavilion.

Schuylkill County

  • $8,500 to the Pottsville Area Little League for field upgrades
  • $5,000 to Minersville Fire Rescue for emergency equipment.
  • $5,000 to Liberty Fire Company No. 4 for turnout gear.
  • $10,000 to Schuylkill County Volunteer Firefighters Association for fire training facility upgrades.

Susquehanna County

  • $5,000 to the Borough of Montrose for park enhancements.
  • $5,000 to the United Fire Company of Montrose to purchase rescue equipment.
  • $5,000 to the Rail-Trail Council of Northeastern Pennsylvania for trail improvements.

Wyoming County

  • $5,000 for Hunts for Healing to support injured veterans and first responders.
  • $9,000 for the Triton Hose Company of Tunkhannock No. 1 to purchase a thermal imaging camera.
  • $1,000 for Clinton Township to purchase a generator to maintain traffic controls.
  • $7,000 for Equines for Freedom to provide treatment to veterans with PTSD.
  • $1,500 for the Tunkhannock Area School District to support educational initiatives.

About Atlantic Sunrise

The Atlantic Sunrise project is an expansion of the existing Transco natural gas pipeline system in eastern Pennsylvania designed to transport enough natural gas to serve approximately 7 million homes. The design and construction of the project is projected to generate approximately $1.6 billion in positive economic impact, according to a study authored by researchers at Pennsylvania State University.

About Williams

Williams operates the Transco pipeline, which consists of more than 10,000 miles of pipe and provides about one-third of the natural gas consumed in Pennsylvania. Williams operates pipelines and related facilities which handle about 30% of the nation’s natural gas.

Safe travels: Tips for driving through pipeline construction work zones

Work zones are important for maintaining, constructing and upgrading critical infrastructure such as roadways, bridges and pipelines. We constantly discuss the energy and economic benefits of infrastructure projects. At the end of the day, however, our primary goal is to ensure that each Atlantic Sunrise pipeline expansion worker and commuters makes it home safely. We want drivers to navigate our work zones without incident.

National Work Zone Awareness Week, April 9-13, is the perfect time to stress that work zone safety is everyone’s responsibility: drivers and passengers, construction crews and emergency services are all accountable each day for work zone safety. If you’re in a work zone, you play an important role in safeguarding people’s lives.

According to U.S. Department of Transportation Federal Highway Administration data, most 2016 work zone incidents occurred on arterial (high traffic) roadways. That year — the latest data available — saw 765 fatal crashes in work zones, with 143 worker fatalities. Speeding was a factor in 190 of these crashes.

It’s important to exercise caution when driving, but especially when driving through a work zone. Please keep these tips in mind when driving through a pipeline construction work zone:

  • Check phone apps, websites and the radio before you go to get the latest traffic information.
  • Always wear your seatbelt. It’s your best defense in a crash.
  • Expect the unexpected, as the work zone you drove through yesterday may be completely different today.
  • Avoid distractions and keep your eyes on the road.
  • Keep alert and pay attention to other drivers since narrowed traffic patterns hamper your ability to maneuver around other vehicles.
  • Don’t speed or tailgate other drivers because these often lead to crashes.
  • Obey road crews and signs.
  • Be patient and stay calm. Crews are working to improve infrastructure to better all our lives.

At the end of the day, however, our primary goal is to ensure that the  Atlantic Sunrise pipeline expansion is constructed safely, which applies to both construction workers and commuters. It is important to us that drivers navigate our work zones without incident.

Williams’ Atlantic Sunrise project gives large benefits to small businesses

Small businesses are the backbone of the U.S. economy. At Williams, we appreciate the contributions of small businesses across the state in helping the Atlantic Sunrise project get to where it is today.

Today, National Mom and Pop Business Owners Day, recognizes small businesses across the country for the vital role they serve in providing jobs and so much more to our communities. Small businesses have played a critical role in the progress of Atlantic Sunrise: 

Darrel Lehman Dump Truck Services

During what is historically a notorious winter slowdown, Darrel Lehman Dump Truck Services CEO Gail Lehman is left with no choice but to lay off her drivers. This year, that didn’t happen. Because of the Elizabethtown, Pa., company’s work on Atlantic Sunrise, Lehman’s drivers are getting overtime and she’s been able to purchase new equipment.

Warihay Enterprises

In nearby Manheim, Pa., Warihay Enterprises co-owner Rob Warihay Jr. is experiencing similar benefits thanks to Atlantic Sunrise. In a February LNP article, Warihay compared the project and the associated work to “spring in winter.” His employees have maintained a busy 50- to 60-hour workweek due to Atlantic Sunrise — something he says is unusual for this time of year.

Pump N Pantry

Small businesses such as Lehman’s and Warihay’s that are directly working on the project aren’t the only ones seeing the benefits from Atlantic Sunrise. Pump N Pantry President Scott Quigg said his chain of convenience stores has seen an increase in business because of the project and the WillShop Local app, which he called a “great endeavor.”

We say thanks to these and all the other small businesses that have helped to make Atlantic Sunrise a success.

How natural gas sweetens the US energy pie

Today marks Pi Day, an international recognition of the mathematical relationship between the circumference of a circle and its diameter, but we’d like to take the opportunity to talk about a different kind of pie. Not cherry or apple. Not even chocolate cream. We’re going to talk about the American energy pie.

You might think the U.S. energy pie sounds less appetizing than other options, but it is just as delicious because it makes so many everyday things possible. Without it, your natural gas oven would just be a box with a door. This pie is used by electricity companies to power homes and businesses. Without it, your fridge and other appliances are left depowered.

The recipe for a successful U.S. energy pie requires a healthy amount of natural gas.

In 2016, the U.S. Energy Information Administration reported that natural gas makes up nearly one-third of our essential energy mixture. As we continue building infrastructure to support additional takeaway capacity, such as the Atlantic Sunrise pipeline expansion, you can expect the number to grow as it has since the earlier part of this century.

The energy pie doesn’t favor one source over others. Williams understands the importance of all energy sources, including nuclear and renewables. Our natural gas works in coordination with other types of energy. For example, the sun isn’t always shining and the wind isn’t always blowing. At those times, electricity grid operators need to generate power through another source.

More and more, they are choosing natural gas. A study last year by economic consultants The Brattle Group for the American Petroleum Institute noted:

… falling natural gas prices and more stringent environmental regulations have led natural gas generation to replace output from coal, and, to some extent, retired nuclear resources.

Why? It’s not just that natural gas is a low-cost, domestic energy source. Natural gas has advantages over other energy resources for the attributes needed for system reliability.

How great does an energy source that’s affordable, domestic and loved by electricity grid operators sound? That’s natural gas. Without it, our nation’s energy pie doesn’t have the right ingredients.

5 tips to spring into energy savings

When you think about spring, you may picture warmer weather, green grass, blossoming flowers and trees filled with budding leaves — or you may think about setting the clocks forward an hour as daylight saving time comes to an end.

Daylight saving time was first enacted in the U.S. during World War I as an energy-saving measure. President Lyndon B. Johnson signed into law the Uniform Time Act of 1966 that required the U.S. to observe six months of daylight saving time and six months of standard time, or “fall back, spring forward.”

Losing an hour affords us the opportunity to think about how to save energy in our own homes. While Williams is helping to save energy costs with the Atlantic Sunrise pipeline expansion that will bring low-cost, domestic natural gas to more homes and families, you can take some basic steps around your home that could help decrease your energy bills. Here are five energy-saving tips to consider as spring approaches:

Service your heating and cooling units

Having your heating and cooling units regularly serviced can maximize efficiency — and savings.

 

Hiring a technician to maintain and service your heating and cooling systems can help you to save energy and money, according to the U.S. Department of Energy. While more complex maintenance and service are best left to the professionals, you can routinely replace or clean your air filters, which can reduce energy consumption by up to 15 percent.

Clean the fridge

One of the biggest energy hogs in the home is your refrigerator, which can use nearly 14 percent of your monthly energy. By performing a little spring cleaning on your fridge, you can cut down on its energy consumption and your energy bills. Clear dirt and dust from coils, and remove unwanted food to allow better air circulation and increased efficiency.

Use natural ventilation

Natural ventilation is a great way to decrease your electricity bill. Instead of running your air conditioner all night, open your windows to allow in the cool air. When you wake up, shut windows and blinds to capture this cool air inside your home.

Fix hot air leaks

Hot air leaking into your home causes your air conditioner to run more, thus increasing your energy costs. Stop warm air from leaking inside by sealing cracks and openings throughout the home, and add caulk or weatherstripping to leaky doors and windows.

Become a fan of your ceiling fan

Your ceiling fan in the winter should be pushing warm air toward the floor. In the spring, you’ll want to switch the fan’s direction to draw air upward causing it to cool the room and ensure constant air flow. Turn off the fan when no one is in the room.

With these simple tips, you can help save energy and money on your energy bills. Be sure to let your friends and family know how they can reduce energy use by sharing this article with them.