MarkWest expands Marcellus, Utica infrastructure



Denver-based midstream company MarkWest Energy Partners completed two large-scale infrastructure projects in the liquids-rich areas of the Marcellus and Utica shale plays.

In addition, MarkWest resumed operations of Plant III at the Houston processing and fractionation complex in Washington County. The Houston complex consists of three processing plants totaling 355 million cubic feet per day (MMcf/d) and 98,000 barrels per day (Bbl/d) of ethane and heavier fractionation capacity. Plant III is a 200 MMcf/d cryogenic facility that has been offline since May 28, after the facility’s heat exchanger was damaged, the company said.

In the Utica Shale of Ohio, MarkWest Utica EMG, a joint venture between MarkWest and The Energy and Minerals Group, is in startup mode for its third cryogenic processing plant at the Seneca complex in Noble County.

The 200 MMcf/d Seneca III plant will increase total processing capacity at the complex to 600 MMcf/d. The Seneca complex is supported by long-term, fee-based contracts with Antero Resources, Gulfport Energy, Rex Energy, PDC Energy and other producers. MarkWest Utica EMG expects to complete a fourth 200 MMcf/d plant in the second quarter of 2015.

In addition to the Seneca complex, MarkWest Utica EMG’s Cadiz complex in Harrison County, Ohio, also is expanding. MarkWest Utica EMG recently completed a 40,000 barrel per day de-ethanization facility at the Cadiz complex. This new facility will provide MarkWest Utica EMG’s producer customers’ with the ability to meet residue gas quality specifications and downstream ethane pipeline commitments. Ethane produced at the new Cadiz facility will be delivered to the Appalachia-to-Texas Express pipeline, according to the company.

In addition, during the third quarter of 2014, the Cadiz II plant will become operational and increase total cryogenic processing capacity at the Cadiz complex to 325 MMcf/d, MarkWest said.

The company has completed 25 major infrastructure projects in the last two years, totaling over 3 billion cubic feet per day of processing capacity and nearly 200,000 Bbl/d of fractionation capacity to support producers’ midstream requirements primarily in the Marcellus and Utica shales.

In the remaining six months of 2014, the company plans to complete five additional projects in the Northeast and is constructing eight additional projects, that are scheduled to begin operations in 2015 and later.

Stephanie Ritenbaugh: sritenbaugh@post-gazette.com or 412-263-4910

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