Sept. 05–Houston’sEnterprise Products Partners said it is expanding what is already the world’s largest natural gas liquids complex in the world in Mont Belvieu.
Enterprise said it is beginning construction on its 10th fractionator facility just east of Houston in Mont Belvieu. Fractionators take the streams of natural gas liquids from oil and gas wells and separate the NGLs into their individual parts, such as ethane, butane and propane.
Enterprise just completed its ninth fractionator and the 10th is expected to come online in early 2020. The 10th will add 150,000 barrels a day in processing capacity, bringing Enterprise’s total Mont Belvieu capacity to 905,000 barrels daily.
Much of the oil production from areas such as West Texas’ booming Permian Basin and South Texas’Eagle Ford shale also produces large volumes of NGLs. Apart from the heating, cooking and petrochemical uses of NGLs like propane and butane, ethane in particular is only a feedstock for the surging petrochemical sector along the Gulf Coast.
“The addition of our newest fractionator will facilitate continued NGL production growth, including from the Permian Basin where NGL volumes are expected to more than double over the next four years,” said Enterprise Chief Executive Jim Teague.
Enterprise already exports a lot of butane, propane and more, and is currently building an ethane export terminal along the Houston Ship Channel. Enterprise also recently announced it’s planning to build a deepwater crude oil exporting terminal several miles offshore of the ship channel.
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