Route of the new pipeline. Route of the new pipeline.

Construction begins on submarine pipeline

800-kilometer project will carry natural gas from the US to Veracruz

Work on a US $2.1-billion submarine gas pipeline spanning the Gulf of Mexico from Tuxpan, Veracruz, to Texas began yesterday in the Tamaulipas port city of Altamira.

The 800-kilometer pipeline will transport competitively-priced natural gas from the southern United States, where the resource is abundant, to meet a growing demand in the Mexican market, according to Carlos Ruiz, chief executive officer of IEnova, a Mexican energy company that is working on the project in partnership with Canadian pipeline company TransCanada Corporation.

Ruiz says that the construction of the pipeline, the largest current energy project in the country, is part of a strategic plan by the federal Energy Secretariat to grow the national energy network in order to shore up the secure and reliable supply of the cheap, efficient and environmentally-friendly fuel.

He also believes that the project will increase competitiveness, create jobs and benefit ordinary Mexicans.

“With this supply it will be possible for the [Federal Electricity] commission to generate electricity at more competitive prices, which will benefit a lot of families as well as commerce and industry in the country.”

The gas will supply power plants in Tamaulipas and Veracruz.

The underwater pipeline will be the first in Mexico developed by a private consortium and is one of the largest projects of its kind in the world.

More than 1.8 million tonnes of steel will be used in its construction.

Capacity of the pipeline will be 2.6 billion cubic feet per day or more than a third of all gas consumed in Mexico.

It is estimated that the project will take 30 months to complete.

TransCanada has already successfully completed several energy infrastructure projects in Mexico and Robert Jones, the company’s president in the country, is certain that their experience and expertise will ensure that this project is also a success.

“Every project has been carried out in a transparent, clear and open way with the Federal Electricity Commission. Mexico has seen the benefits from these natural resources and through these projects, innovative solutions that benefit Mexican consumers have been offered.”

Source: Milenio (sp)

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