“In 2012, we successfully completed and began operations for major growth projects totaling $2.9 billion of investment. Most of these projects were completed on or under budget and on time or ahead of schedule. During the fourth quarter of 2012, we completed $1.2 billion of large projects including our sixth NGL fractionator at Mont Belvieu, Texas in October 2012 and the expansion of our natural gas and NGL pipeline systems serving the Eagle Ford shale in South Texas. Earlier this week, we began commissioning the third train at our natural gas processing plant near Yoakum, Texas serving Eagle Ford shale producers. We expect this train to begin commercial operations at the beginning of March. These projects are contributing new sources of gross operating margin and distributable cash flow, and we expect to see the full benefit of these assets as volumes increase over the next few years,” continued Creel.
“Our commercial, engineering and operations teams are doing a great job developing growth and expansion opportunities to meet the needs of our energy producing and consuming customers. We have announced approximately $7.2 billion of major capital projects under construction that are scheduled to begin commercial operations from 2013 to 2015. Approximately $2.4 billion of these projects are expected to begin operations and start generating cash flow in 2013. The revenues associated with these projects are predominately fee-based and the larger projects have the additional assurance of demand revenues or minimum volume commitments,” stated Creel.
“In 2013, we expect continuing volume and gross operating margin growth from our fee-based natural gas processing activities, NGL pipelines and fractionators and crude oil pipelines and storage facilities as these growth projects begin operations. We also expect our natural gas processing margins will be lower in 2013 than 2012 due to lower ethane prices, and that our equity NGL production will be lower as our natural gas processing business continues to transition to a more fee-based business. We expect the growth in our fee-based businesses will offset the potential decrease in gross operating margin from the commodity portion of our natural gas processing business and, moreover, will support our distribution growth in 2013,” said Creel.