Joint venture plans 750-mile NGL pipeline

By OGJ editors
HOUSTON, May 5 -- Overland Pass Pipeline Co. LLC, Tulsa, plans to build a 750-mile NGL pipeline from gas processing facilities in the Rocky Mountains to a market hub in Central Kansas. The $450 million pipeline will extend from Opal, Wyo., to fractionation facilities at Bushton and the Conway-Midcontinent NGL market and storage hub.

The new company is a joint venture of a Williams Cos. Inc. subsidiary and Oneok Inc. affiliate Northern Border Partners LP. Williams initiated the project last year to relieve capacity restraints on the Mid-America pipeline and other systems in the Rockies. Northern Border, which holds a 99% interest in the pipeline, has agreed to reimburse Williams for development costs to date.

The pipeline will be designed with a 110,000 b/d capacity that can be increased to 150,000 b/d with added pumping facilities. Gravity is expected to minimize the number of pump stations required.

Northern Border subsidiaries will begin constructing the 14-in. and 16-in. pipeline in mid-2007 and will operate it upon completion in early 2008. However, Williams has an option to boost its initial 1% interest to 50% and become operator within 2 years of operations start-up.

Under a long-term shipping agreement, Williams will dedicate LNG to Overland Pass from its two natural gas processing plants near Opal and Wamsutter in southwestern Wyoming. The company also is expanding its Wyoming processing capabilities.

Northern Border said it would invest an additional $160 million to expand the capacity and fractionation capabilities of its existing NGL distribution system. Its subsidiaries will provide downstream fractionation and transportation services that ultimately will give shippers access to another major demand hub in Mont Belvieu, Tex., for finished NGL products.

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