Bighorn Gathers its Sixth Producer

With Bighorn Gas Gathering LLC turning a year old this month, the joint-venture which consists of CMS Energy affiliates and Northern Border Partners L.P. continues to sign up new customers for its Powder River Basin natural gas gathering system, upping its total number of producers to six with the newly announced addition of Prima Oil and Gas, a subsidiary of Prima Energy.

Bighorn has entered into long-term agreements with Prima to provide gas gathering services for Prima's coal-bed methane gas production on approximately 10,000 acres of land. Bighorn will extend its gathering system west of Gillette, WY to access Prima's 4,000 acre Kingsbury/Throne prospect, which currently has over 30 wells drilled on it and the potential of 70 more. The agreement also includes about 6,000 acres of dedicated property in Campbell County's Stones Throw prospect area, which was leased by Prima. The company has drilled 110 coal-bed methane wells on the plot already.

Prima is the latest addition of producers using the gathering system. Other users under agreement with Bighorn include: CMS Oil and Gas; Pennaco Energy; J.M. Huber Corp.; Gastar Exploration Ltd.'s subsidiary, First Sourcenergy Wyoming; and Lance Oil & Gas, a subsidiary of Western Gas Resources.

The addition of Prima's production to its gathering system caps a busy November for Bighorn. Last month the company announced the completion of a 56-mile, $17.8 million extension to its existing 100-mile gathering system (see Daily GPI, Nov. 17).

The Bighorn gas gathering system moves approximately 250 MMcf/d in coal-bed methane gas from the northern part of the Powder River Basin, and delivers it to the Fort Union Gas Gathering System and other U.S. markets via interstate pipeline connections to Fort Union. Currently, Bighorn has long-term contracts with producers covering gas production from almost 800,000 acres of dedicated property.

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