News Release
June 09, 2004


8 Bcf Expansion Underway at Existing Egan, La., Salt Dome Facility

HOUSTON – Duke Energy Gas Transmission (DEGT) announced today it is expanding by 8 billion cubic feet (Bcf) the natural gas storage capacity at its Market Hub Partners’ (MHP) Egan facility in Acadia Parish, La.

DEGT and MHP are increasing the certificated working gas storage capacity at Egan from 16 Bcf to 24 Bcf under authority from the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission. By mid-to-late 2006, it is projected that Egan’s two existing 8 Bcf caverns will be joined by a third like-sized cavern.

“The Egan facility has forged a proven track record of storage and storage-related service offerings to its customers. Egan customers can utilize up to seven interstate pipelines to connect to the services there,” said Greg Rizzo, a group vice president for DEGT and president of MHP, the DEGT unit that operates the company’s salt dome storage assets. “The expansion of Egan will provide additional high-deliverability storage services that can help customers respond to the impact of natural gas price volatility.”

MHP drilled the pilot hole into the Egan-area underground salt dome formation last year as part of the expansion. The cavern leaching process begins this month.

“As a working facility with infrastructure in the ground, Egan clearly offers advantages to customers seeking high-deliverability storage services,” Rizzo said. “Equally important, as evidenced by this latest expansion announcement, we are able to rapidly add more capacity as market conditions warrant.”

DEGT and MHP utilize the low-cost “Solution Mining Under Gas” (SMUG) technology to quickly bring additional capacity to the marketplace with no interruption of service.

The SMUG technique uses specially designed wellheads and leaching equipment to flush salt from the caverns. The components can switch from injecting fresh water and withdrawing the salt-concentrated brine to injecting and withdrawing natural gas.

“With 12-turn (monthly injection/withdrawal cycles) capability and more than 1.2 Bcf of current deliverability, Egan is ideal for electric generation peak-day and peak-hour requirements,” Rizzo said.

The salt dome storage at Egan also is utilized by local distribution companies seeking supply reliability during periods of market volatility. In addition, Egan is ideally positioned on the Gulf Coast with capabilities to meet the balancing requirements of current and future liquefied natural gas facility operators. Egan has been fully subscribed since Duke Energy’s acquisition of MHP in 2000. It currently has more than 20 customers utilizing firm, interruptible, park & loan and wheeling services.

“Natural gas storage is a key component of DEGT’s service offerings,” Rizzo said. “With the belief that additional natural gas infrastructure can mitigate price volatility, we are actively pursuing expansions and new projects across North America that provide greater deliverability at peak times when it’s needed most in an effort to help our customers weather periods of higher prices.”

MHP owns and operates a second salt dome storage facility in Moss Bluff, Texas, with 16 Bcf of current working gas capacity and the company has received approval to develop another salt dome storage facility in Copiah County, Miss.

Duke Energy Gas Transmission is a North American leader in developing energy infrastructure and connecting major natural gas supply basins to growing markets. The company’s natural gas operations include more than 17,500 miles of interstate transmission pipeline and about 250 billion cubic feet of storage capacity in Canada and the United States. More information on DEGT can be found at:

Duke Energy is a diversified energy company with a portfolio of natural gas and electric businesses, both regulated and unregulated, and an affiliated real estate company. Duke Energy supplies, delivers and processes energy for customers in North America and selected international markets. In 2004, the company celebrates a century of service with the 100th anniversary of its electric utility Duke Power. Headquartered in Charlotte, N.C., Duke Energy is a Fortune 500 company traded on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol DUK. More information about the company is available on the Internet at:

Contact: Gretchen Krueger
Phone: 713/627-4072
24-Hour Phone: 704/382-8333