The fractionator will have a nameplate capacity of 85,000 b/d and is expected to begin operations as early as January 2016. The eighth fractionator started operations in November 2013 (OGJ Online, Nov. 19, 2013).
The addition gives EPP a gross nameplate NGL fractionation capacity of 755,000 b/d at Mont Belvieu and total gross NGL fractionation capacity of 1.2 million b/d. Mont Belvieu also will be capable of producing 265,000 b/d of propane.
EPP has secured the required permits and emission credits for both the ninth and a similarly-sized 10th NGL fractionator at Mont Belvieu. The complex is complemented by the partnership’s network of NGL supply and distribution pipelines, more than 110 million bbl of salt-dome storage capacity, and access to international markets through its LPG export facility and ethane export facility, currently under construction (OGJ Online, Apr. 22, 2014; June 12, 2014; July 31, 2014).
“This ninth NGL fractionator is not only needed to facilitate long-term NGL supply growth driven by the shale plays, it will also support increasing domestic and international demand,” said Michael A. Creel, chief executive officer of EPP’s general partner. “This fractionator secures incremental supplies of ethane for our Aegis pipeline and ethane export facility as well as low-ethane propane for our LPG export facility.”