Ethane and Ethylene Pipeline Projects Announced by EPIC

Affiliates of EPIC, EPIC Y-Grade Pipeline and EPIC Olefins, will construct ethane and ethylene pipelines to support the steam cracker being built by Gulf Coast Growth Ventures in San Patricio County, EPIC announced.

“We are extremely proud to be a key supplier and service provider to Gulf Coast Growth Ventures as they construct a world class ethane cracker in the lower Gulf Coast,” said Phillip Mezey, Chief Executive Officer of EPIC.

The 130 miles 12 inch pipelines will be expected to be completed by the third quarter of 2020. The transportation agreements between EPIC and Gulf Coast Growth Ventures are multiyear and are underpinned by minimum volume commitments.


Grand Prix NGL Pipeline started up from Permian to Houston

The $1.4 billion Grand Prix natural gas liquids pipeline project that stretches from Permian Basin to the Houston area has been started up, Targa Resources said on Thursday. The pipeline can currently move 300,000 barrels per day, which can be expanded to 500,000 barrels daily.

"Our Grand Prix NGL pipeline recently commenced deliveries into Mont Belvieu, realizing the long-run strategic goal of integrating our leading gathering and processing position with our premier NGL logistics, fractionation and export platform," said Targa Chief Executive Joe Bob Perkins.

The pipeline system is also getting expanded to stretch into Oklahoma and that effort is under construction. The company also plans to expand the western portion of the Grand Prix pipeline into New Mexico.

Natural gas liquids products like propane, butane and ethane will flow through the pipeline from Permian Basin and will be separated into their individual components at processing facilities, called fractionators, in Mont Belvieu.


Joint Venture to Extend Ethylene Pipeline Network in South Texas

Enterprise Products Partners announced on Tuesday that under a joint venture with Lavaca Pipeline Co., they are planning to construct a 90 mile Baymark pipeline. The pipeline will carry ethylene and will run from Bayport area southeast of Harris County to Markham, Texas.

The Baymark pipeline will link to Enterprises’ Mont Belvieu complex, a 600 million-pound ethylene storage well. The pipeline will also link to Enterprises' ethylene export terminal at Morgan Point near La Porte, Texas.

As the petrochemical export boom rolls on, U.S. ethane production is projected to increase nearly 60 percent to 2 million barrels a day by 2021, up from 1.26 million barrels a day in 2016. U.S producers are taking advantage of the soaring ethane production unleashed by the shale boom to produce ethylene at a relatively cheaper cost.

"The U.S. petrochemical industry is experiencing unprecedented growth with production of ethylene expected to exceed 100 billion pounds per year by 2025," said A.J. "Jim" Teague, chief executive officer of Enterprise's general partner in a statement. "This growth in the petrochemical sector is creating additional opportunities for Enterprise to grow our midstream petrochemical services. The Baymark Pipeline further extends our petrochemical value chain, providing producing and consuming customers with enhanced access to the largest liquids storage hub in North America at Mont Belvieu, as well as linking them to growing domestic and international markets."


Service Started on 658-Mile Shin Oak NGL Pipeline From Permian Basin to Mont Belvieu

The Shin Oak NGL Pipeline project to move natural gas liquids from the West Texas town of Orla to a processing and storage facility in Mont Belvieu, has its service started, announced on Thursday by Houston pipeline operator Enterprise Products Partners.

Shin Oak is designed and built as a 24-inch diameter 658-mile pipeline and is starting its service with an initial capacity to move 250,000 barrels of ethane, propane, butane and other natural gas liquids per day.

"The Shin Oak Pipeline represents another important addition to our expanding network of integrated midstream assets in the Permian Basin," Enterprise Products Partners CEO A.J. "Jim" Teague said in a statement.

The company is building a third natural gas processing plant in Orla that is expected to be completed by June. Another natural gas processing plant in the Loving County of Mentone is expected to begin service by March 2020. Combined, the Orla and Mentone facilities will give Enterprise more than 1.6 billion cubic feet per day of natural gas processing capacity and more than 250,000 barrels of natural gas liquids production per day in the Permian Basin.


Environmental Groups Ask for More Time to Review Shell Falcon Pipeline Permits

Environmental groups are asking Pennsylvania's Department of Environmental Protection to extend a 30-day comment period on environmental permits for Shell's Falcon pipeline that would carry natural gas liquids to the company's Beaver County Ethane Cracker in Potter Township.

The current comment period started on January 20 and ends on February 20, but environmental groups say the potential impacts of the project merit a longer timeframe for citizens to properly analyze the impacts and give proper feedback.

Environmental groups worry that Shell's project would have similar impacts to local streams and wetlands that the Mariner East 2 pipeline did in Pennsylvania while it was under construction.

The state DEP pulled construction permits for Sunoco Logistics' Mariner East 2 pipeline in early January after the project resulted in repeated permit violations and caused more than 60 spills along its route.

Shell's 97-mile pipeline would carry 107,000 barrels per day of ethane to its Beaver County Ethane Cracker.

The DEP said it is sticking to the 30-day comment period for now and that it has not yet made a decision on extending the comment period.

State Impact Pennsylvania

Kinder Morgan's 270-Mile Utopia Pipeline Now in Service in Ohio

Source:  Utopia Pipeline

Kinder Morgan's 270-mile Utopia pipeline system was placed into service Tuesday and now carries 50,000 barrels per day of ethane products from eastern Ohio to Windsor, Ontario.

The $500 million system, which capitalizes off Ohio's Utica shale play, could be expanded to transport as many as 75,000 barrels per day.

Kinder Morgan is also planning growth in West Texas with a proposed $1.7 billion gas pipeline from the Permian Basin to Corpus Christi in partnership with two other pipeline companies.

The Permian-to-Corpus project is expected to begin operating by October 2019, joining many other planned pipeline projects in the area as the Permian Basin booms.

Fuel Fix

Kinder Morgan Sells Half of Equity Interest in Ohio Pipeline to Riverstone

Utopia Pipeline Route via the Utopia East Overview Site:

Kinder Morgan announced Tuesday that it sold 50 percent of its stake in the Utopia Pipeline Project to Riverstone Investment Group. The private equity firm agreed to an upfront cash payment that will reimburse Kinder Morgan for half of its prior capital expenditures related to the project.

Riverstone has also agreed to pay for its share of future capital expenditures that are necessary to complete and commission the project that is estimated at $500 million.

“This is another step towards achieving our stated goals of strengthening our balance sheet and positioning the company for long-term value creation. This agreement also demonstrates our ability to originate projects with attractive returns that partners are willing to pay to participate and invest in,” said Kinder Morgan president and chief executive officer Steve Kean.

The Utopia Pipeline will run for 215 miles from Harrison County, Ohio to Fulton County, Ohio and connect with an existing Kinder Morgan pipeline to transport ethane and ethane-propane mixtures to petrochemical companies in Ontario, Canada. The pipeline is planned for construction in November of this year and full service early 2018.

Kinder Morgan
Utopia Pipeline Fact Sheet