Bucksport Power Plant

BANGOR, ME, Nov. 7, 2000 - Bangor Gas today announced that it has begun natural gas deliveries to Bucksport Energy LLC located at International Paper's (formerly Champion International) paper mill in Bucksport, Maine. Under a 15-year contract with Hydro-Québec Energy Services (US) Inc. (HQUS), a subsidiary of Hydro-Québec, Bangor Gas will deliver 48 million cubic feet per day of natural gas to the new 174-megawatt cogeneration power plant.

The new power plant will produce both electricity and steam for the mill. The plant is a joint effort between International Paper, the mill owner, and HQUS. The plant produces more electrical power than the mill needs, and HQUS will buy the excess energy and sell it in the market.

Construction on a 12-inch and 10-inch lateral pipeline serving the mill began in April 1999 and was completed in July 2000. With the lateral now in place, Bangor Gas will focus on developing a local distribution system to serve residential and commercial customers in the town of Bucksport.

"We're pleased that Hydro-Québec Energy Services (US) Inc. chose Bangor Gas to deliver natural gas to its new Bucksport Energy cogeneration plant – one of the first new gas-fired power plants in the state," said Rodger Schwecke, general manager of Bangor Gas.

"The significance of the contract with HQUS and the lateral goes well beyond serving the needs of a new power plant, however. It paves the way for bringing a viable energy choice that is safe, efficient, reliable and competitively priced to the community of Bucksport," said Schwecke. "The lateral, and subsequent use of natural gas by consumers, promises to deliver broad economic and environmental benefits to the region."

"HQUS is proud to have played a part in the construction of the natural gas power plant and to join with Bangor Gas in offering the people of Maine a new energy source," said Daniel Garant, managing director, wholesale markets and project development, at Hydro-Québec.

In 1998, Bangor Gas received approval from the Maine Public Utilities Commission to provide natural gas service to residential, commercial and industrial customers in 12 communities in the greater Bangor area. These communities include Bangor, Bradley, Brewer, Bucksport, Eddington, Hampden, Herman, Milford, Old Town, Orono, Orrington, and Veazie. Construction of portions of the natural gas distribution system began the summer of 1998 and some of the system is expected to begin operation in fall of 2000.

Hydro-Québec is one of North America's leading electric utilities. It is recognized worldwide for its know-how in electricity generation, transmission and distribution, through its business units and subsidiaries responsible for developing international markets.

Hydro-Québec's subsidiary HQ Energy Services (US) Inc. offers the company an additional source of power supply, enabling it to increase its presence on Northeast US market at competitive prices.

Bangor Gas is a unit of Sempra Energy International, which develops, operates and owns energy projects. Sempra Energy International is a subsidiary of Sempra Energy (NYSE: SRE), a Fortune 500 energy services holding company based in San Diego, 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.