Eminent Domain: Bluegrass Pipeline to Link Ohio Natural Gas to Louisiana

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Ohio landowners along the propsed Bluegrass Pipeline may face eminent domain proceedings to allow completion of the project.

Two energy companies are planning construction of the 1,153 mile pipeline that will transport natural gas liquid from the Utica and Marcellus shale fields in Ohio and neighboring states to Louisiana for processing. Approximately 500 miles of the new pipeline would be located in Ohio and Kentucky. The proposed pipeline would connect with an existing pipeline at Hardinsburg, Kentucky. The planned pipeline would include 100 miles of 20 inch diameter pipe and 400 miles of 24-inch diameter pipe and would ultimately have the capacity to move 400,000 42-gallon barrels of mixed natural gas liquids every day. Output from the Utica and Marcellus shale fields in Ohio is surging and the existing pipelines are inadequate to move the natural gas liquids to refineries.

The “Bluegrass Pipeline” is a venture of Williams and Boardwalk Pipeline Partners of Houston, Texas and is expected to be operational by the end of 2015. The venture owners believe that combining the new pipeline with an existing pipeline will allow the pipeline to be in service faster than other options.

Although the route of the Bluegrass Pipeline has not been finalized, it is expected to cross from Kentucky into Ohio east of Cincinnati and travel across southern Ohio to Noble County where it would divide into two “legs.” One section of the pipeline would continue east into West Virginia and the other would travel northeast passing Youngstown and entering northwest Pennsylvania.

Permitting, public consultation and right-of-way acquisition needs to be completed. The Bluegrass Pipeline requires approval of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission and customer contracts to support the project. The companies are currently negotiating with landowners. If you own property in Ohio and have been contacted by Bluegrass Pipeline LLC or agents acting on its behalf, contact the law firm of Clark, Perdue & List, eminent domain attorneys in Columbus, Ohio.