El Paso Corp. (ticker: EP, exchange: New York Stock Exchange (.N))
News Release -
El Paso Energy Prepares Final Stage of Manuas Plant for Full Power
Houston, Texas, March 20, 1998 -El Paso Energy International Company, a business
unit of El Paso Energy Corporation (NYSE:EPG), announced today that the final stage
of its three-phase, 240 megawatt (MW) Manaus power plant is scheduled to be on-line by
early next week. The plant is currently providing 174 MW of power to the city of Manaus,
the capital city of the state of Amazonas in northern Brazil.
The first two phases of the power project are fully operational. Phase three, the
barge-mounted portion of the project, is partially operational and is expected to deliver
the remainder of the plant's 240 MW of power next week. The power plants, which first
began delivering power in December 1997, were built on a fast track to help relieve
frequent blackouts and power shortages in the capital city. The outages were the result of
rapid growth in electrical demand and an unusually dry period causing a reduction in
hydroelectric generating capacity. Power from the plant will be sold under a four year
contract to Eletronorte which has an option to extend the agreement.
"Power rationing in the city of Manaus has been dramatically reduced since our
first unit was declared operational," said John Hushon, president of El Paso
Energy International. "We knew this was an aggressive construction schedule. We built
the financial consequences of possible delays into our budget. The contract required that
power commence incrementally by December with the complete 240 megawatts realized in
mid-March. We plan to deliver that level of power to Manaus within a week.
"In addition, El Paso Energy International is moving forward with the
development of three additional Brazilian power plants, one located in Macaé, another in
Corumbá, and the third in Paraná. We also are preparing to bid on other electrical
privatization this year."
With over $9 billion in assets, El Paso Energy Corporation provides energy
solutions through five business units: Tennessee Gas Pipeline Company, El Paso
Natural Gas Company, El Paso Field Services Company, El Paso Energy Marketing
Company, and El Paso Energy International Company. The company owns the nation's
only integrated coast-to-coast natural gas pipeline system and has operations in
interstate natural gas transmission, gas gathering and processing, energy marketing, and
international infrastructure development.
This release includes forward-looking statements and projections, made in
reliance on the safe harbor provisions of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of
1995. The companies have made every reasonable effort to ensure that the information and
assumptions on which these statements and projections are based are current, reasonable,
and complete. However, a variety of factors could cause actual results to differ
materially from the projections, anticipated results or other expectations expressed in
this release. While the companies make these statements and projections in good faith,
neither the companies nor their managements can guarantee that the anticipated future
results will be achieved. Reference should be made to the companies' (and their
affiliates') Securities and Exchange Commission filings for additional important
factors that may affect actual results.