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Dominion proposes expansion at Loudoun Compressor Station

Snapshot of Dominion’s Eastern Market Access project plan. Dominion
Dominion Power says it plans to build a new Eastern Market Access project that would help bring more natural gas for Washington Gas customers and a new electric power-generation facility under construction in Maryland, the company announced in an Oct. 6 statement.

The project would include adding compression and auxiliary facilities along Dominion’s existing interstate natural gas transmission pipeline. EMA would add a new compressor station in Charles County, Md. and supplement compression capacity at an existing station in Loudoun and additional work at Dominion’s Fairfax County facility.

In Loudoun County, Dominion said it would install 7,000 horsepower of additional compression electric in a new building within the existing Loudoun Compressor Station fence line as well as construct a new building at the Loudoun Metering and Regulation Station.

The company’s project, however, will still need to be approved by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, which Dominion says it plans to seek.

Following Dominion's announcement, Loudoun Supervisor Tony Buffington (R-Blue Ridge) said he held an initial on-site meeting with the company to learn more about what it is proposing and how it would affect the community.

“While it is the responsibility of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) to approve or deny these type of proposals, I am working with county staff to ascertain whether any portion of this specific proposal will require county approval,” Buffington said.

Dominion said in a statement that the stations would “meet or surpass” all federal, state and local regulations for noise and emissions controls and that no new pipeline right of way would be required.

The company estimates EMA would add about 31,370 horsepower of compression and provide 294,000 dekatherms per day of firm transportation service, which Dominion says would be enough natural gas for an average winter day for over 267,000 households.

If the project is approved, Dominion estimates it will cost about $145 million and would be in service by late 2018.

Buffington says he plans to continue to meet with the surrounding community and keep residents informed throughout the process.

Dominion will hold open houses in the fall for landowners, government officials and members of the public interested in the project.

In the meantime, Dominion said it plans to file an application for a Certificate of Public Convenience and Necessity with the FERC in November. The commission will need to conduct a full review of the project in compliance with the Natural Gas Act and National Environmental Policy Act.


Loudoun County residences beware: these expanded compressor station operations increase the possibility of natural gas escaping into the air during “venting” operations. Read this and you’ll understand why and how that can happen, especially if the public isn’t aware of, as they weren’t on Sept. 26.

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