Released By CMS Energy, MAP, TEPPCO News Release
March 09, 2000

CMS Energy, Marathon Ashland Petroleum and TEPPCO Create Texas to Illinois Pipeline Joint Venture

HOUSTON, (Thursday, March 9, 2000) CMS Energy Corporation (NYSE: CMS), Marathon Ashland Petroleum LLC, and TEPPCO Partners, L.P. (NYSE: TPP) today jointly announced an agreement to form a limited liability company (L.L.C.) that will own and operate an interstate refined petroleum products pipeline extending from the U.S. Gulf Coast to Illinois. Each of the companies will own a one-third interest in the L.L.C.

The joint venture will build a 70-mile, 24-inch diameter pipeline connecting TEPPCO’s facility in Beaumont, Texas, with the start of an existing 720-mile, 26-inch diameter pipeline extending from Longville, La., to Bourbon, Ill. The pipeline, which has been named Centennial Pipeline, will pass through portions of seven states--Texas, Louisiana, Arkansas, Mississippi, Tennessee, Kentucky and Illinois.

The Centennial Pipeline will intersect TEPPCO’s existing mainline near Lick Creek, Ill., where a new 2 million-barrel refined petroleum products storage terminal will be built.

CMS Panhandle Pipe Line Companies, which owns the existing 720-mile pipeline, has made a filing with the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission to take the line out of natural gas service as part of the regulatory process. Conversion of the pipeline to liquid products service is expected to be completed by the end of 2001.

"This project illustrates the CMS Energy North American strategy of maximizing the use of our existing assets by converting an underutilized gas line to liquids service," said Chris Helms, president of CMS Panhandle Pipe Line Companies. "The Panhandle Pipe Line Companies serve as a building block for the company’s growth and expansion into all forms of energy."

"The new project will enhance our logistics presence in the Midwest, reaching new customers while continuing to provide outstanding service for our existing customers," said J.L. (Corky) Frank, president of Marathon Ashland Petroleum LLC.

"TEPPCO’s ability to serve our customers will be enhanced by providing additional petroleum products to the Midwest market where supplies have been getting tighter," said William L. Thacker, chairman, president and chief executive officer of the general partner of TEPPCO. "It will alleviate a bottleneck in TEPPCO’s current system by combining our U.S. Gulf Coast supply capabilities and mid-continent delivery network, with the mid-system capacity of the joint venture."

Based in Dearborn, Mich., CMS Energy Corporation has annual sales of about $6 billion and assets of about $16 billion in the United States and 22 countries; based in Findlay, Ohio, Marathon Ashland Petroleum, owned 62 percent by Marathon Oil Company -- a part of USX-Marathon Group (NYSE: MRO) -- and 38 percent by Ashland Inc. (NYSE: ASH), is the nation’s fourth largest refiner with 935,000 barrels-per-day capacity; based in Houston, Texas, Texas Eastern Products Pipeline Company, the general partner of TEPPCO Partners, L.P., is an indirect wholly-owned subsidiary of Duke Energy Corporation. TEPPCO is one of the largest common carrier pipelines of refined petroleum products and liquefied petroleum gases in the United States.

Except for the historical information contained herein, the matters discussed in this news release are forward looking statements that involve certain risks and uncertainties. These risks and uncertainties include, among other things, market conditions, governmental regulations and other factors discussed in CMS Energy’s, Marathon Ashland Petroleum’s, and TEPPCO’s filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission.


Contact: John Barnett (CMS Energy)
Phone: 713/989-7556
24 Hour Phone: 704/382-8333
Contact: Chuck Rice (Marathon Ashland)
Phone: 419/421-4525
24 Hour Phone: 704/382-8333
Contact: Kathy Sauvé (TEPPCO)
Phone: 713/759-3635
24 Hour Phone: 704/382-8333