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Kinder Morgan (KMI) Seeks FERC Nod for Increasing Gas Flow


Kinder Morgan, Inc.’s KMI subsidiary, Tennessee Gas Pipeline Company LLC, has filed an application with the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) to boost flow of natural gas to Mexico.

The company plans to boost capacity along one of its existing cross-border natural gas pipelines in the Rio Grande Valley. Kinder Morgan intends to enhance capacity of its Pemex Border Crossing Facility between Hidalgo, Texas, and Reynosa, Mexico. Tennessee Gas Pipeline Company wants FERC to approve capacity expansion on this pipeline to 468 million cubic feet per day from nearly 185 million cubic feet per day.

Tennessee Gas Pipeline Company has also appealed for the acceleration of the process. The boosting of the capacity along the 24-inch pipeline will not entail any construction activity or physical alterations. Moreover, Mexico is listed by the United States as a "free trade nation" under the North American Free Trade Agreement.

In March 1999, the cross-border project was originally approved by the FERC officials. Kinder Morgan acquired Tennessee Gas Pipeline Company in August 2012. The company stated in its application that an environmental appraisal is not essential because one had already been executed for the project when it was initially approved. Further, the expansion will not entail any new construction.

Per a notice released by the FERC Secretary under the federal law, the agency has 90 days to either file its own environmental appraisal of the project or open a schedule to perform an review, which will entail numerous state and federal agencies.

A 20-day public comment period has been opened by FERC secretary for the company’s application and will close on January 24.

Price Performance

Kinder Morgan’s shares have lost 1.6% against the industry’s gain of 2.1% in the last six months.

Zacks Rank & Key Picks

Kinder Morgan currently carries a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold). A few better-ranked players in the energy sector include Statoil ASA STO, Pioneer Natural Resources Company PXD, and Northern Oil and Gas Inc NOG. All these stocks sport a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy). You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank stocks here.

Statoil, based in Norway, is a major international integrated oil and gas company. It saw an average negative earnings surprise of 8.44% in the last four quarters.

Headquartered in Irving, TX, Pioneer Natural Resources Company is an independent oil and gas exploration and production company. The company delivered an average positive earnings surprise of 67.62% in the last four quarters.

Northern Oil and Gas, based in Minnetonka, MN, is an independent energy company. The company delivered an average positive earnings surprise of 175.00% during the same time frame.

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