UGI Energy Services' subsidiary UGI Sunbury has secured an approval from the US Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) to construct and operate the 35-mile long Sunbury pipeline.

The pipeline is designed to supply low-cost natural gas from the Marcellus Shale region to the proposed 1,000MW gas-fueled power generation facility near Shamokin Dam in Snyder County, Pennsylvania.

Panda Power Funds and Sunbury Generation will build the Hummel Station power plant on the site of Sunbury Generation’s decommissioned coal-fired plant.

UGI president and CEO John Walsh said: "The support we’ve received from local, state and federal leadership and today’s approval by FERC enable this major step forward for a cleaner and more secure energy future in the central Susquehanna Valley and across the region.

"The Sunbury Pipeline will establish a vital delivery link between abundant Pennsylvania natural gas and the Hummel Station, and is another example of UGI’s efforts to bridge the infrastructure gap between low-cost producing areas of Pennsylvania and consuming areas across our region."

Designed to deliver up to 200,000 Dth of natural gas per day, the pipeline consists of 20-inch diameter steel pipeline and related facilities.

UGI Energy Services president Brad Hall said: "The new Hummel Station promises to be one of the most efficient and economical generating stations in the country."

Planned to completed as early as November 2016, the pipeline will originate in eastern Lycoming County and its route extends south through Montour, Northumberland and Union counties and ends at Hummel Station.