Open Season Starts For North Baja Pipeline Project


SAN FRANCISCO and SAN DIEGO, June 19, 2000 - PG&E Corporation's National Energy Group and Sempra Energy International today launched an open season to solicit market interest in capacity on the proposed 212-mile North Baja Pipeline project.

The companies announced last week that they were joining with Mexico's Próxima Gas, S.A. de C.V. to build the project, which will begin at an interconnection with El Paso Natural Gas Co. near Ehrenberg, Ariz., traverse southeastern California and northern Baja California, Mexico, and terminate at an interconnection with the Rosarito Pipeline south of Tijuana.

The PG&E National Energy Group will direct development of the 77-mile U.S. segment of the pipeline, while Sempra Energy International and Próxima Gas will direct development of the 135-mile Mexico segment. The project is projected to be in service as early as January 2003.

In the open season beginning today, prospective shippers will have an opportunity to subscribe for capacity on the pipeline. Non-binding requests for service must be submitted no later than July 14, 2000. Results of the open season will be tabulated and the potential shippers contacted regarding project specifics by July 21, 2000. The companies will seek binding precedent agreements by the end of September.

In its initial design, the pipeline is projected to have capacity to transport 400,000 decatherms of natural gas per day. The project calls for 30-inch pipe, with one compressor station in Arizona.

"The North Baja Pipeline Project is intended primarily to serve electric generation needs in northern Mexico, as well as industrial and local distribution company load along the Mexico leg," said Peter Lund, vice president, pipeline development and marketing, for the PG&E National Energy Group. "However, we will consider viable requests for service from delivery points all along the route."

"Given the high energy demand growth in northern Baja California, there is potential for a strong market response," said George Liparidis, regional president and general manager, North American operations, for Sempra Energy International. "To the extent the market indicates an interest in capacity beyond our initial scope, we will consider expanding capacity by increasing compression on the Mexico side."

Potential customers interested in participating in the open season should contact Henry Morse at the PG&E National Energy Group (503-833-4108) or Ryan O'Neal at Sempra Energy International (619-696-4585) to receive a bid package.

PG&E Corporation, with revenues of more than $20 billion and operations in 21 states, markets energy services and products throughout North America through its National Energy Group. One of the largest U.S. transporters of Canadian natural gas, the Corporation owns and operates a 612-mile dual pipeline system in the Pacific Northwest. PG&E Corporation's businesses also include Pacific Gas and Electric Company, the Northern and Central California business that delivers natural gas and electricity to one in every 20 Americans.

Próxima Gas S.A. de C.V. is a private Mexican company that develops and invests in infrastructure projects of great economic impact in Northern Mexico.

Sempra Energy International develops, operates and owns energy projects. The company currently is involved in joint or solo ventures that provide natural gas and electricity services to more than 2.5 million customers in Argentina, Canada, Chile, Mexico, Peru, the United States and Uruguay. Sempra Energy International is a subsidiary of Sempra Energy, a Fortune 500 energy services holding company based in San Diego, Calif., with 12,000 employees, revenues of nearly $5.5 billion and more than 9 million customers in the United States, Europe, Canada, Mexico and South America.


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