Results challenge the industry position that no one suffers but also suggest the problems may not be as widespread as some critics claim; air pollution seems more of a threat than water pollution, and the processing stations that push gas into pipelines may be more of a problem than the drilling sites themselves.
Last week, the EPA ordered MarkWest Energy (MWE), with a substantial presence in the county, to submit a pollution control plan for one plant and expects to see the improvements “sooner rather than later.”
U.S. pipeline operators have a problem - finding cracks before they rupture and turn into oil spills.
The "number one asset," a torpedo-like robot called a "smart pig," can't always spot the fissures, or the data collected can take months to analyze.
A case in point came when Exxon Mobil (XOM) inspected a pipeline in Arkansas in February using a smart pig, only for the line to split open a month later and spill 5,000 barrels of crude. The device didn't find the minute cracks along the seam of the pipe that caused the burst.
The boom in U.S. oil output is straining the country's 184,000 miles of pipeline, with the volume of spillages jumping by 77% so far this year to 93,000 barrels.
The JV will pursue projects to support energy producers in the Utica and Marcellus shale fields, including a processing operation in Ohio, a pipeline to connect the processing complex to Gulf Coast fractionation facilities and the development of new Gulf Coast facilities.
MWE also plans to offer up to $1B of its common units, using proceeds for purposes including debt repayment, working capital, capital expenditures or acquisitions.
MWE's ~1.6B cf/day of processing and 60K bbl/day of fractionation capacity in the Marcellus is expanding to ~3.3B cf/day and 175K bbl/day by year-end 2014, the firm says; it's even better in the Utica, where processing capacity moves from 185M cf/day to nearly 1B cf/day and fractionation will reach 100K bbl/day.
MarkWest Energy Partners (MWE) declares $0.84/share quarterly dividend, 1.20% increase from prior dividend of $0.83. Forward yield 4.99%. For shareholders of record August 6. Payable August 14 . Ex-div date August 2. (PR)
Given that distribution-capture season is coming, where MLPs typically enjoy the bulk of their returns, Credit Suisse expects an upside bounce; for the July capture season, MLPs have delivered an average of 3.66% in total return the last seven years. The firm's top-quality names: [[MMP]], KMI, TEP, [[(GEL]], [[(LNG]], [[(CQP]], MWE, SXL, TRGP, XTEX, XTXI.
In hundreds of cases across the U.S., drillers have agreed to cash settlements with people who say fracking ruined their water, according to a Bloomberg analysis of legal and regulatory filings. The strategy keeps data from regulators, policymakers, the media and health researchers, and makes it difficult to challenge the industry’s claim that fracking has never tainted anyone’s water.
In two separate transactions, Summit Midstream Partners (SMLP) acquires a high-pressure gas gathering system in the Marcellus Shale from MarkWest Energy (MWE) for $210M, and purchases natural gas gathering assets in the Bakken Shale from Summit Investments from $250M. As a result, SMLP raises its full-year earnings forecast to $140M-$150M from $115M-$125M.
Low interest rates have helped MLPs raise capital at a reasonable cost, enabling returns well above their cost of capital and supporting cash distribution growth, but Simmons analysts say investor interest should remain strong even as rates rise - though due diligence will be more important than ever. Darren Schuringa says it's crucial to measure an MLP’s coverage ratio rather than the actual money it pays out.
Mark West Energy (MWE) agrees to acquire Anadarko Basin Granite Wash midstream assets from Chesapeake Energy (CHK) for $245M. In conjunction with the acquisition, MWE has executed long-term, fee-based agreements with CHK for gas gathering, compression, treating and processing services.
$EPD, $NGLS, $ETP, $DCP, $MWE, $OXY and Vitol are all either in the process of expanding LPG exports or starting new LPG export terminals.
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MWE vs. ETF Alternatives
MarkWest Energy Partners L.P. is engaged in the gathering, processing and transportation of natural gas; the gathering, transportation, fractionation, storage and marketing of NGLs; and the gathering and transportation of crude oil.