Kinder Morgan Issues Force Majeure

NEW YORK (DTN) -- Kinder Morgan declared a force majeure at its ethanol terminal in Argo near Chicago Sunday because of severe weather conditions in the Midwest that was expected to have affected operations at the supply hub, trade sources said.

The sources said the declaration was made in a letter to customers Sunday night.

In the letter, the company said, "This letter serves as the written notice of Force Majeure declaration, as defined in our Agreement, effective 10:00 p.m. on Jan. 5, 2013, due to the extremely frigid and snowy conditions in the area. Based on these conditions; we find it necessary to temporarily suspend operations at the Argo, Ill., terminal."

The letter continued, "At this time we have temporarily suspended most operations at the terminal and we cannot receive or ship your commodity as usual. Based on the extended forecast, we do not anticipate the suspension will last for an extended period of time. Once conditions improve we will shift our efforts to resuming operations. We will keep you apprised of our progress and the expected timeline required to resume operations. We are taking all commercially reasonable efforts to operate on a limited basis and will hopefully resume normal operations soon."

Reached for comment, a spokeswoman at Kinder Morgan said she would look into the issue and get back to a Schneider Electric reporter.

Trade sources said severe cold in the Midwest prompted closures of some ethanol plants and delayed deliveries.

George Orwel can be reached at george.orwel@telventdtn.com

(BM/AG)