Emissions, Gas, News

Dominion completes gas transmission & storage divestiture to Berkshire Hathaway Energy

ICF International natural gas prices

Dominion Energy has closed on the sale of most of its natural gas transmission and storage assets, a long-range $9.7 billion move that allows it to focus on its state-regulated utility businesses and transition to carbon-free resources.

Virginia-based Dominion sold the gas transmission and storage business to Berkshire Hathaway Energy for ab out $8 billion. The deal includes $2.7 billion in cash and transfer of approximately $5.3 billion of related debt.

These operations include more than 5,500 miles of interstate gas transmission pipelines, about 775 billion cubic feet (Bcf) of gas storage that the company operates and an operating 25 percent stake in Cove Point.

The sale of the company’s interests in the Questar Pipelines, also to Berkshire Hathaway Energy, is expected to be completed in early 2021 following receipt of Hart-Scott-Rodino clearance. The company has received a cash payment of approximately $1.3 billion in anticipation of the sale of these interests and will transfer approximately $430 million of related debt to Berkshire Hathaway Energy upon close of this follow-on transaction.

The company’s regulated utility is moving toward energy sustainability and emissions reduction in its five-state service territory.

“We offer an industry-leading clean-energy profile which includes a comprehensive net zero target by 2050 for both carbon and methane emissions as well as one of the nation’s largest zero-carbon electric generation and storage investment programs,” Dominion CEO Tom Farrell said in a statement when the deal was announced earlier this year. “Over the next 15 years we plan to invest up to $55 billion in emissions reduction technologies including zero-carbon generation and energy storage, gas distribution line replacement, and renewable natural gas. In addition, between 2018 and 2025 we expect to retire more than four gigawatts of coal- and oil-fired electric generation.”

The full transaction is expected to result in a nearly $6 billion reduction in Dominion Energy debt.

Berkshire Hathaway Energy is a subsidiary of Berkshire Hathaway Inc. The energy arm owns Mid-American Energy and other utilities.