Enterprise Products Partners LP (EPP) executed an additional long-term contract to provide ethane storage, transportation, refrigeration, and loading services from its 10,000-bbl/hr loading capacity ethane export terminal under construction at its Morgan’s Point site on the Houston Ship Channel. With the new agreement, EPP said it has long-term commitments for about 85% of the terminal’s capacity.
EPP will build an 18-mile, 24-in. OD pipeline from Mont Belvieu, Tex., to supply the export terminal, scheduled for completion in third-quarter 2016. The company has signed a 30-year agreement with the Port of Houston Authority for use of the terminal (OGJ Online, June 12, 2014).
Surging ethane extraction capability in US shale plays has given it a price advantage relative to naphtha and made it a viable export commodity. US ethane extraction capacity has increased 69% since 2006 to 1.23 million b/d, and is projected to reach 2.2 million b/d by 2020. Ethane exports are forecast to reach 150,000-200,000 b/d in the next 5-6 years (OGJ, June 2, 2014, p. 82).
EPP last year began loading ethane onto its Appalachia-to-Texas Express (ATEX) pipeline between Washington County, Pa., and the US Gulf Coast, moving production from four Marcellus-Utica shale region fractionators to Mont Belvieu (OGJ Online, Dec. 6, 2013).