Docket No. CP22-466-000
The staff of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC or Commission) has prepared a final environmental impact statement (EIS) for the Wahpeton Expansion Project (Project). WBI Energy Transmission, Inc. (WBI Energy) proposes to construct and operate a 60.2-mile-long, 12-inch-diameter natural gas pipeline in Cass and Richland Counties, North Dakota. Construction and operation of the proposed facilities would provide firm transportation service for about 20,600 equivalent dekatherms of natural gas per day to meet a growing demand for natural gas in southeastern North Dakota.
The Project would include the following natural gas facilities:
- a new 60.2-mile-long, 12-inch-diameter natural gas pipeline;
- minor modifications to WBI Energy’s existing Mapleton Compressor Station;
- a new Montana Dakota Utilities (MDU)-Wahpeton Border Station;
- a new MDU-Kindred Border Station;
- seven new block valve settings;
- four new pig launcher/receiver settings; and
- ancillary facilities.
The EIS was prepared in compliance with the requirements of the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA), the Council on Environmental Quality regulations for implementing NEPA (40 Code of Federal Regulations [CFR], 1502.13), and FERC regulations implementing NEPA (18 CFR 380).
FERC staff concludes that construction and operation of the Project would result in some adverse environmental impacts. Most of these impacts would be temporary and occur during construction (e.g., impacts on wetlands, land use, traffic, and noise). With implementation of WBI Energy’s impact avoidance, minimization, and mitigation measures, as well as adherence to Commission staff’s recommendations (found in Section 5.2 of the EIS), Commission staff conclude that project effects would be reduced to less than significant levels, except for climate change impacts that are not characterized in this EIS as significant or insignificant. The FERC Commissioners will take into consideration staff’s recommendations when they make a decision on the Project.