In order to assist the fast increasing drilling operations of
the southern part of the Utica Shale, MarkWest Utica EMG L.L.C.,
which is a joint venture between natural gas processor and
MarkWest Energy Partners LP
) and The Energy and Minerals Group, has further expanded its
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At its Seneca complex, MarkWest Utica is planning to build a
third cryogenic gas processing plant, which is expected to
process cryogenic gas at a rate of 200 million cubic feet per day
(MMcf/d). The Seneca complex is located in the Noble County,
MarkWest Utica reveals that its processing complex will have
three plants, all of which are estimated to process cryogenic gas
at a rate of 600 MMcf/d. MarkWest Utica added that the first two
plants are expected to start their operations by the last quarter
of 2013, while the third one will become operational by the
second quarter of 2014.
Additionally, MarkWest Utica is improving its Cadiz processing
complex, which is based in Harrison County, Ohio. Recently,
MarkWest Utica started operation of the Cadiz I plant, which has
a processing capacity of 125 MMcf/d. Currently, the complex has a
total capacity of 185 MMcf/d but by the middle of 2014 the
capacity will be increased to 325 MMcf/d.
Moreover, MarkWest Utica believes that by the middle of 2014, its
Utica Shale-based overall midstream operations will include
gathering pipeline, which is expected to spread over three
hundred miles. It will also include 5 processing plants with
processing capacities of 1 billion cubic feet per day.
Denver, Colorado-based MarkWest Energy, a master limited
partnership (MLP), is engaged in the gathering, processing and
transmission of natural gas, transportation, fractionation and
storage of natural gas liquids (NGLs), and the gathering and
transportation of crude oil. The partnership conducts its
operations in four segments: Southwest, Northeast, Liberty and
We like MarkWest Energy's high-quality and diverse portfolio of
midstream assets, which generate stable and recurring revenues
from long-term fee-based contracts.
On the flip side, the partnership typically depends on equity and
debt markets for growth finance. Market turmoil resulting from
issues such as the recent subprime crisis will impact MLP growth
MarkWest Energy currently carries a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold),
implying that it is expected to perform in line with the broader
U.S. equity market over the next one to three months.
In the energy sector, firms that are expected to significantly
outperform the U.S. equity market over the next one to three
EPL Oil & Gas Inc.
EQT Midstream Partners LP
). All three firms currently carry a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong