New Mexico Gas Company is pursuing plans to build the state’s first natural gas pipeline to Mexico. The company will seek a federal permit to begin construction and plans to have it completed within a year.
According to company spokeswoman Teala Kail, the $5 million pipeline project would extend an existing pipeline in Santa Teresa roughly five miles to the Mexico border and make the pipeline wider to increase capacity. To begin exporting, facilities would need to be built on the Mexican side of the border.
Kail stated that the pipeline costs will come from shareholders and will not be passed on to customers.
Several natural gas producers are meeting with the representatives of the Mexican energy industry in the hopes of taking advantage of the pipeline once it is built, according to Wally Drangmeister, a spokesman for the New Mexico Oil & Gas Association.
Because the proposed pipeline would reach the border between the U.S. and Mexico, the company must be issued a presidential permit from the U.S. Department of State. New Mexico Gas expects the permit process to take just a few months.
New Mexico Gas Company is the state’s largest natural gas utility, serving more than 515,000 customers.