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Duke Energy Buys Piedmont

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COMPANIES UNITED IN PIPELINE PUSH …

Duke Energy – the largest electric power provider in America – has reached a deal to purchase Piedmont Natural Gas for $4.9 billion.  The agreement – assuming it is approved by federal regulators and Piedmont shareholders – would give the Charlotte, N.C.-based company an additional one million natural gas customers in North Carolina, South Carolina and Tennessee.

Duke and Piedmont are partners in the Atlantic Coast Pipeline, a $5 billion project which would bring natural gas obtained by hydraulic fracturing from the Marcellus Shale in West Virginia to North Carolina.  Duke desperately needs for the project to be approved in light of the ongoing federal crackdown on coal plants.

Here’s a look at the proposed route …

(Click to enlarge)

pipeline

The Atlantic Coast Pipeline project is supported by the governors of North Carolina, Virginia and West Virginia, but is running into stiff opposition from landowners along its proposed 554-mile route.

Dominion Resources – the company that’s developing the pipeline with Duke and Piedmont – has filed a flood of lawsuits against these property owners, citing a Virginia state statute that requires them to allow utility surveyors on their property.

Obviously laws on that vary from state-to-state …

The debate over eminent domain is also alive and well in South Carolina, the proposed terminus of a 360-mile gasoline and diesel fuel pipeline.

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