Wednesday, August 29, 2012

ONEOK Will Build a Fifth Natural Gas Processing Plant

Link here. Same size as others, it appears.
The ONEOK says the plant will cost $160 million and be able to process 100 million cubic feet of natural gas each day. Oneok is based in Tulsa, Okla. It already operates two natural gas processing factories in western North Dakota and is building two others.
The article does not say where, but on a ND PSC agenda Don sent me ONEOK has an application for "Garden Creek #2. If this is related, then maybe this fifth natural gas processing plant will be northeast of Watford City. 

For those keeping track:
  • the first ONEOK natural gas processing plant: Grasslands
    the second: Garden Creek (#1) -- northeast of Watford City
  • the third: Stateline #1 -- northwest of Williston
  • the fourth: Stateline #2 -- northwest of Williston
  • the fifth: Garden Creek #2 -- northeast of Watford City, most likely


  1. And for all those that worry about the pending bust and all the jobs that go to be gone, they forget that each one of these plants employ 60-80 permenent employees and pay about 70-90k a year. This is the job that stable employees (those with families) are wanted. As such, the evolution of the temporary worker to the more permanent worker continues. 60,80 or in this case 400 at a time.


    1. Kent, you are so correct. I was thinking the very same thing. I can't speak to Minot, but when I was growing up in Williston, it seemed the typical business enterprise (other than farming) was a retail in which there might be a handful of folks earning minimum wage with mom-and-pop being owner/manager. Except for a couple of "manufacturing" businesses, that was about it.

      Now, any one of those natural gas processing plants would be huge for any western Dakota town, but five of them fairly close together. Yes, it is huge. And they wouldn't be building the $165 million plants if they thought the activity/production would be short-lived.

      I actually think it's quite incredible.

  2. Bruce, the Lynn Helms interview from a few weeks back. He mentioned the potential for 8 billion in Natural Gas infrastructure. Previously the talk had been 4 billion (this equated to 10 gas plants, tioga expansion, pipelines, etc), so based on 8 billion, they must be talking 20 plants in the near future.


    1. Corn growers planning possible 1.3 billion dollar fertilizer plant in Jamestown

    2. I posted an earlier story along that line:

      but did not know that a location was forthcoming. Great comment. Thank you. Here's the link to the story:

      Sounds like a stand-alone post. Thank you very much for taking the time to write.

    3. Again, thank you for the link. I've posted/linked the story:

  3. It really is quite incredible, isn't it? Just when one thinks things are going to level off, maybe plateau, then we get another story of another big project. I don't know about you, but another $165 million project, even in the Bakken, is not trivial. And as you mentioned earlier, lots of great paying, long term jobs.

  4. if you believe the latest Presentation from Continential resources that there is 903 Billion BO orginal oil in place and 45 Billion BOE recoverable, there had better be some more NG processing plants to handle all the associated gas..
    This just puts another leg under the stool of how much oil is in the WB..

  5. See comment above: it appears that folks are talking about raising the number of natural gas processing plants like ONEOK is putting in from ten now to twenty, doubling the number.

    When it rains, it pours.


  6. The ONEOK gas plant the story refers to is the Garden Creek II plant announced by ONEOK Partners just over a month ago, on July 26, 2012. The real story here is that permitting in ND only takes a bit over one month. Granted, ONEOK Partners may have presubmitted the permitting information. Plus Garden Creek II is a carbon copy of Garden Creek I and Stateline I and II, so the previous permitting work made this somewhat of a rubber stamp (except for Prevention of Significant Deterioration - PSD - portions of the CAA). One month is a bit better than the Fed's seven years on the Makoti refinery.

    For ONEOK however there is a different concern, as their proposed NGL and oil pipelines through Wyoming are running into opposition in Crook County, near Sundance.

    1. That's embarrassing. I think I posted that story, the press release about ONEOK building yet another NGL plant, back in July. I forgot all about it. I can't keep up. Now folks know why I can't follow the Montana Bakken; just too much.

      Amazing, the federal vs state permitting process. I did not know about the Makoti refinery.

      I was aware of the "new" problems in Wyoming (I think I might even have posted that -- the farmer(s) stating that the pipelines were needed for energy in this country, but the location of the pipelines [his backyard] was not a good location) due to possibility of sink holes). NIMBY. It might be a different story but it sounds familiar.


  7. Last month, ONEOK announced capital spending of over $100 mill on nat gas collection lines in Divide County. The intended gas plant for Divide County gas is Stateline II.

    With Hess's large expansion of their Tioga Plant, the new Plains All American Plant near Ross, the Whiting/MDU plant north of Belfield, there remains big areas of the oil patch that don't have easy access to a plant. Most of the pre-2006 gas plants are tiny - even the new Whiting / MDU plant is relatively small at 35 mill ft3/day.

    Dunn, Divide, Stark, and the Fort Berthold reservation all have limited nat gas processing. Typically, a nat gas plant needs rail access for produced NGLs or a NGL pipeline. What's interesting is that Garden Creek I and II don't have rail access in McKenzie County, so the profitablity of those plants are highly dependent on the NGL pipeline that is proposed through Wyoming. Once that pipeline is built, locating in nat gas plants in areas without rail becomes much more profitable.

    Recently passed through the Bakken on Amtrak. Noticed a lot of nat gas liquids moving through the rail system from the Hess plant. With the volumes of propane and butane generated in these plants, unit trains seen for oil aren't really feasible. Once the ONEOK NGL and oil pipelines are built, ONEOK profits should increase substantially.

    Going through Mountrail and Williams County on Amtrak, one could just feel the "energy". Seemed like rail construction was going on everywhere. Fracking sand, open cars of piping, nat gas liquid cars, and oil unit trains seemed to be passed continuously where there were double tracks. Oil pipelines to loading facilities and nat gas lines seemed to going in at a number of locales.

  8. Great comment; re-posted as a stand-alone.

    Thank you for taking time to write such a nice note. My hunch is you are enjoying a great trip on Amtrak, going west (?) and working on your computer in the club car. Wow, I enjoy Amtrak.