The Bluegrass is Coming!

While much of the focus in the Ohio Valley and Western Pennsylvania has been on the proposed ethane cracker which is being considered in Beaver County, there are now two pipelines being installed which will drastically alter the way that the Natural Gas Liquids (NGLs) from the Marcellus and Utica Shale are utilized.  First to the scene was the ATEX Enterprise Pipeline which is currently under construction in West Virginia and Ohio.  This pipeline will carry NGLs from the Marcellus and Utica Shales to Texas where the liquids will be utilized by the existing petrochemical industry.

Williams Company’s Bluegrass Pipeline may be behind Enterprise in the race to be the first NGL pipeline to the Gulf, but Williams has taken steps to ensure that it is not far behind.  Although the Bluegrass Pipeline was only announced in the last month or so, Williams has partnered with Boardwalk Partners to use its existing Texas Gas pipeline in the southern portion of the United States to cut down on the total project time.  As a result, the Bluegrass Pipeline is projected to be in service in the 1st half of 2015.

Together these pipelines will provide the oil and gas operators in the Marcellus and Utica Shales the ability to market the  liquids which have made the wet gas windows of these plays some of the most sought after leaseholds in the country.  While much work needs to be done to get both pipelines into service, their impacts will be felt long before Shell’s proposed ethane cracker plant.