ETP to expand Eagle Ford, Mont Belvieu gas, NGL facilities

Energy Transfer Partners LP will further expand its previously announced Rich Eagle Ford Mainline (REM) pipeline and will build another cryogenic processing facility to facilitate multiple long-term, fee-based agreements with producers to provide natural gas gathering, processing, and liquids services from the Eagle Ford shale in South Texas.

REM will include 257 miles of 30-in. and 42-in. OD pipe, with more than 1 bcfd capacity. REM’s initial phase, consisting of 160 miles of 30-in. OD pipe, entered service in October 2011. ETP has scheduled the first expansion, 60 miles of 42-in. OD pipe, for completion in this year’s fourth quarter and the second expansion, 37 miles of 30-in. OD pipe, by fourth-quarter 2013.

The new processing plant, in Karnes County, Tex., will provide the 200 MMcfd capacity necessary to fulfill the long-term shipper commitments on REM. The plant, scheduled to be completed in this year’s fourth quarter, and the previously announced Chisholm and Jackson County processing plants, will provide 1.125 bcfd of processing capacity.

ETP estimates the total cost for the Karnes County processing plant and the REM expansion at $210 million and said its long-term fee-based Eagle Ford contracts now total more than 1.1 bcfd.

ETP’s joint venture with Regency Energy Partners LP, Lone Star NGL LLC, will also build a second 100,000 b/d NGL fractionation facility at Mont Belvieu, Tex.  Supported by multiple long-term contracts, ETP described the second fractionator as necessary to handle increasing NGL barrels from its Woodford shale, Eagle Ford shale, and Permian basin infrastructure, including Lone Star’s 570-mile West Texas Gateway NGL pipeline.

Lone Star says it will complete West Texas Gateway and the initial 100,000 b/d fractionator at Mont Belvieu in first-quarter 2013, and expects the second fractionator to be completed in first-quarter 2014.

ETP estimates the cost of the Mont Belvieu expansion at $350 million.

Contact Christopher E. Smith at chriss@ogjonline.com.

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