Enterprise Products Partners LP has started operation of the second 300 MMcf/d train at its Yoakum cryogenic gas processing plant in Lavaca County, TX. The facility handles production from the Eagle Ford Shale in South Texas.

With the additional train, nameplate capacity of the plant has increased to 600 MMcf/d. The facility is capable of extracting 74,000 b/d of natural gas liquids (NGL). Enterprise is also on schedule to bring the third train at Yoakum into service in the first quarter of 2013 (see Shale Daily, Nov. 3, 2011), at which time total capacity at the complex will increase to 900 MMcf/d and 111,000 b/d of NGLs, the partnership said Monday.

“Like the Eagle Ford Shale play itself, our Yoakum natural gas facility continues to exceed expectations and provide Enterprise with new growth opportunities,” said Jim Teague, COO of Enterprise’s general partner. “Based on the operating results we’ve seen from the first train, which began service in May 2012, we expect the second and third trains to perform above their original design capacity, giving us the confidence to pursue additional processing commitments for all three plants.”

To date, Enterprise has completed construction of 440 miles of gas pipelines as part of its Eagle Ford system, which is connected to Yoakum and the partnership’s seven other integrated processing facilities in South Texas. Including the 900 MMcf/d of anticipated capacity at Yoakum, Enterprise expects ultimately to offer 2.4 Bcf/d of processing capacity for the region.

Construction of a 173-mile extension of the partnership’s NGL pipeline system from Yoakum to LaSalle County, TX, is also under way and on schedule to begin service in the second quarter of 2013, Enterprise said. This project will link to Enterprise’s recently completed NGL pipeline system that delivers Eagle Ford Shale production from Yoakum to Mont Belvieu, TX, where Enterprise is constructing three new NGL fractionators (see Shale Daily, March 21).

Of the 13 unconventional plays tracked in NGI’s Shale Daily Unconventional Rig Count, the Eagle Ford Shale is only one of three plays showing an increase in drilling activity over a year ago. In the week ending Sept. 7 there were 239 rigs active in the play, down from 244 rigs the week before but 33 more than a year ago.