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A robust production growth of this year, which mainly concentrated in Permian, kept even more  producers seeking additional takeaway options. Today we recall some of the major export-bound midstream projects of 2018: completed, announced or still being constructed at the moment. We also highlight the leading companies that make exports happen.

How Important Is Mexico as a Destination for Permian and Delaware Natural Gas?

In 2018 ONEOK and Energy Transfer have significantly added design capacity to their three major Mexican export pipelines:

  • Roadrunner,
  • Comanche Trail,
  • and Trans-Pecos.

Additional 3.1 Bcfd of capacity should both help U.S. producers route the excessive by-product gas from Permian and Delaware and to meet the expected demand growth in the Mexican market.

Currently, though, despite the fact that Mexico has room for U.S. gas (does not really develop its extraction leaning in favor of crude oil business), the demand remains weak. The actual flows through the above lines are still limited to 0.3 Bcfd. Experts give various reasons for that while the overall picture of the Mexican market is not transparent enough.  It may be infrastructure capacity technical constraints. Additionally, industry red tape and growing political resistance from the side of the newly elected leftist Mexican president Andrés Manuel López Obrador may be other reasons for the halted exports growth.

Meanwhile, U.S. producers still need to handle the excessive by-product gas issue. If not Mexico, the destination for the natural gas can be petrochemical facilities of the Texas Gulf Coast area. That option will emerge once these two following projects both stretching from Waha to Agua Dulce are completed:

  • Gulf Coast Express (GCX) - 1.98 Bcfd - scheduled to enter service in late 2019
  • Whistler Pipeline - 2 Bcfd - to be in-service by 4Q of 2020.

The former project has been advanced by Kinder Morgan Inc., DCP Midstream LP and Targa Resources Corp. The latter has NextEra Energy Pipeline Holdings LLC, WhiteWater Midstream LLC, and Marathon Petroleum’s MPLX LP collaborating on it.

Will Mexican market embrace the U.S. natural gas remains to be seen. Capacity to transport it will still be ultimately built. 

Canadian natural Gas: Westward-Bound. How Will Canada LNG (Kitmat) Project Affect U.S. Natural Gas Market

Another long-term game-changer for the U.S. market may be the 1.8 Bcfd Kitmat (LNG Canada) project. It aims at both delivering West Canadian natural gas to the coast and starting the first Canadian LNG exports facility. The first phase consists of 420 mile Coastal GasLink pipeline construction. It should come into service by 2023. The second phase includes the gas liquefaction and storage plant with two liquefaction trains to be built.

In the long run experts believe Kitmat exports will primarily help Canadian producers escape the U.S. market with its low gas prices and improve its margins significantly. The project is thought to create no risks for the U..S. market itself. In fact the opposite can happen. Marcellus and Utica natural gas may find its way to Asia via the newly constructed Canadian West Coast facility.

Permian Basin Midstream LNG

Look At The Future Of American And Appalachian Gas Production

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The crux of the matter is rather simple: productivity gains of local energy operators have been stable not only because they are drilling better acreage, but also because players finally realized capital efficiency gains. And even if some new obstacles impede Appalachia's growth at the same rate as the Permian or Haynesville, it does not detract from the value of the Marcellus and Utica basins. The Appalachians will still be the top producers at a very competitive pace as long as commercial inventory exists. After all, as long as there is commercial inventory, somebody will have to drill.

Russia vs. U.S. as global LNG Exporters

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Russia and U.S. Both Plan Aggressive LNG Export Capacity Growth By 2021. Read more how they compete.

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On June 16 Targa Resources Corp. decided to acquire Lucid Energy Group, located in the Permian Basin, which is a part of Riverstone Holdings LLC and Goldman Sachs Asset Management. Firstly, Targa enlarged due to the recent “blot-on” acquisition of Southcross Energy in the Eagle Ford for $200 million and it will become bigger thanks to the $3.55 billion cash transaction. Targa’s financial position allowed it to utilize convenient opportunities to extend its company so it bought #Lucid using available cash and debt with an estimated pro forma year-end 2022 leverage around 3.5 times. According to Targa’s estimates, the acquisition of Lucid will increase the number of natural gas pipelines by 1,050 miles and add about 1.4 Bcf/d of cryogenic natural gas processing capacity in service or under construction located mainly in Eddy and Lea counties of New Mexico. The investment-grade producers source approximately 70% of current system volumes. According to the press release, a full-year standalone adjusted EBITDA is expected to be between $2.675 billion and $2.775 billion and reported year-end leverage ratio of about 2.7 times. Targa’s updated financial expectations assume NGL composite prices average $1.05 per gallon, crude oil prices average $100/bbl, and Waha natural gas prices average $6 per MMBtu for the remainder of 2022.

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Your team’s ESG performance can be greatly improved applying the asset co-location analysis within upstream or midstream use cases. This has been a topic for a discussion at Rextag’s ‘Is ESG Improvement Next Door?’ webinar. We reviewed some cases like curbing gas flaring or renewable energy sourcing to power the fossil fuel infrastructure. Many combinations are available with access to the data Rextag provides on wells, acreages, power lines, substations, and such renewable infrastructure as wind turbines, methane landfills, etc.

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BPPlc agreed on June 13 to exit the Canadian oil sands in an asset swap with Cenovus Energy Inc. potentially worth up to CA$1.2 billion. 50% non-operated interest in the #SunriseOilSands project will be sold by BP in an agreement reached with Cenovus Energy, a company based in Alberta. Two companies agreed on the following conditions: total consideration for the transaction includes CA$600 million in cash, additionally, a contingent payment with a maximum aggregate value of CA$600 million expiring after two years, and concerning Cenovus, it will have a 35% position in the undeveloped Bay du Nord project offshore Newfoundland and Labrador. Current production from the Sunrise Oil Sands asset is about 50,000 bbl/d and the company anticipates achieving a nameplate capacity of 60,000 bbls/d through a multi-year development program.

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