Where in Suwannee County is the KMI JAX Expansion Project?

Where does this KMI natural gas project start, and where would it connect to Sabal Trail? Across FL 247 Back in March 2015, FERC gave Kinder Morgan docket CP15-144 for its Jacksonville Expansion Project, to ship “natural” gas from Suwannee County to Jacksonville, where Jaxport is gearing up for liquid natural gas (LNG) export. KMI’s FERC application explicitly says Sabal Trail can connect if it wants to, and it turns out Sabal Trail’s own Suwannee County map gives us the answer, once we interpret it:

Suwannee County Route Map

The thick green line is Sabal Trail’s proposed route, with the Hildreth Compressor Station actually located near O’Brien. What are those dashed lines on the map? The one across the north end of Suwannee County is the Southern Natural Gas Company pipeline, and the ones from Live Oak south are Florida Gas Transmission (FGT).

To determine this, you can use the Public Map Viewer by the Pipeline & Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA). It lets you select pipelines by operator so you can tell which is which. Here is a composite map of all natural gas pipelines PHMSA recognizes in Suwannee County:

FGT Live Oak and south; SONAT north across towards White Springs

Also note the checked boxes for Highly Populated Areas (there are none in Suwannee County) and Other Populated Areas (only Live Oak and Branford seem to count). This answers one question which came up in the hearing for WWALS v Sabal Trail & FDEP: which parts of Suwannee County are low population, and so would get the thinnest pipe and the least federal protection if any events like sinkholes, leaks, fires, or explosions happened? Apparently according to PHMSA all of Sabal Trail proposed path through Suwannee County would get thin pipe, except Sabal Trail did say the river crossings would get thicker pipe.

Onwards to KMI’s own schematic map of the JAX Expansion Project, which I will call JEP:

600x388 Exhibit F: Compressors and loops; Suwannee, Columbia, and Bradford Counties, Florida, in Jacksonville Expansion Project, by FGT, for SpectraBusters.org, 31 March 2015

KMI defines JEP locations in terms of mile markers on the existing FGT pipeline. Good luck finding a map of those: national security, you know. However, on the schematic, the first expansion loop appears to start a bit east of where a 24″ southbound spur branches off the main FGT east-west pipeline. And we can see by the above maps that that branch is east of O’Brien and southeast of the proposed Hildreth Compressor Station. The schematic labels that first red loop as

3.0 miles of 30″ Mainline loop beginning at M.P. 518.3 in Suwannee County, FL and ending at M.P. 521.3 in Columbia County, FL.

So where is that? Well, PHMSA may decline to show details of pipeline routes, but you can see them on google map aerials:

Across FL 247

The FGT east-west mainline is clearly visible crossing CR 49 and FL 247, then Sand Hill Road, before it exits Suwannee County into Columbia County. The southern FGT spur is visible east of CF 49, crossing FL 247 as it goes straight south. Even the proposed Sabal Trail route is visible, as a power line right of way running from northwest to southeast.

Where does KMI want JEP to go from there? Apparently mostly along its existing FGT route, which you can see on this FL PSC map of existing natural gas pipelines in Florida.

FGT, Gulfstream, SONAT, and others

Comparing the JEP schematic, apparently it turns towards Jacksonville in Bradford County. Pretty soon it exits the Suwannee River Basin into the St Johns River basin. Perhaps more on that later.


2 thoughts on “Where in Suwannee County is the KMI JAX Expansion Project?

  1. Hello, I am trying to find out where the “Onwards to KMI’s own schematic map of the JAX Expansion Project, which I will call JEP” map came from. I am working in opposition to a proposed mining application in Bradford County, FL. The information that is in schematic map will be of a great help, but I do need to know where it came from.


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