Challenge: Ensure that natural gas is a viable energy option for residential, commercial, industrial, and power generation customers across South Carolina and enable South Carolina to continue to attract economic development prospects.
Background: Since natural gas is not produced in South Carolina, all natural gas is transported into South Carolina by three underground interstate pipelines: Dominion Carolina Gas Transmission (DCGT), Transcontinental Pipeline (Transco), and Southern Natural Gas (SNG). The natural gas is then delivered to local distribution companies, municipalities, power generators, and industrial customers.
South Carolina has thousands of miles of underground transmission and distribution pipelines that bring and move natural gas across the state to serve the needs of industrial, commercial, and residential customers. Natural gas is in high demand due to several factors – increased availability of low-cost, domestic natural gas; increasing environmental regulation of GHG; and manufacturing and population growth in South Carolina. However, the lack of availability of natural gas also creates issues for economic development and other interests. It seems likely that in order to continue to serve the growing demand for natural gas in South Carolina, additional natural gas transmission and distribution pipeline capacity are needed. The process for planning additional natural gas pipeline capacity begins only when necessary end-user commitments have been finalized. Large construction projects do not begin until the pipeline has been reviewed and approved by all required regulatory bodies. The process to submit and receive approval to expand or construct a major pipeline system can take years.
Approach: A study committee should meet as quickly as practical to review policies. The committee should also consider issues that prevent natural gas from being an option for many and evaluate the costs and benefits of various methods of providing natural gas as an option for South Carolina energy consumers. Consideration should be given to education, funding, and long-term planning, in light of the lengthy approval process.
COMMITTEE MEMBERS (PDF)
Committee Work Plan (PDF)
AGENDA: June 29, 2017 (PDF)
MINUTES: June 29, 2017 (PDF)
Energy Plan Calendar