Buckeye Texas Partners LLC's 50,000 b/d condensate splitter facility has entered commercial service under a long-term take-or-pay tolling agreement. It is part of the first phase of an expansion at the South Texas facilities. A liquid petroleum gas (LPG) refrigerated storage facility was recently completed as well. In addition to the splitter capabilities, the facilities will offer five marine docks, more than 6 million bbl of petroleum storage capacity with rail and truck loading/unloading capability and three field gathering facilities with pipeline connectivity to the condensate splitters and docks. All aspects of this expansion are fully contracted under long-term agreements with Trafigura Trading LLC, Buckeye said (see Shale Daily, Sept. 3, 2014). "The completion of these splitting units further bolsters our South Texas assets as a leading export hub on the Gulf Coast, with the ability to aggregate, store, process and distribute many different petroleum products," said Buckeye CEO Clark Smith.
An opponent of Denver-based Inflection Energy LLC’s plans to drill for natural gas in Lycoming County, PA, has lost her court battle to stop development, failing to post a nearly $6 million bond that a common pleas court judge had ordered for the case to advance. Laura Capel, a resident living near a proposed Inflection site, had filed an appeal with the court challenging a conditional use permit issued by Loyalsock Township to drill in a residential-agricultural zone. Like other drilling opponents across the state, Capel had argued that residential-agricultural districts are not suitable for industrial operations, although they blanket much of the state. The common pleas court last month ordered Capel to pay a $5.69 million bond, saying her appeal was frivolous (see Shale Daily, Nov. 20). Capel and her attorney did not pay the bond by last week's deadline. The outcome was another victory for Inflection, which recently faced a similar challenge in nearby Fairfield Township. A state appellate court upheld the company’s conditional use permit for a residential-agricultural district in that case and overturned a lower court's ruling against it (see Shale Daily, Sept. 15).