Hess To Begin Selling Bakken Natural Gas from Tioga Plant

Hess' Bakken Acreage Map
Hess' Bakken Acreage Map

Hess announced in March 2014 that it will begin selling natural gas from its Tioga, North Dakota, plant. According to the company, expansion plans for the plant have been delayed due to poor weather conditions.

In a Reuters article, Hess spokesman, John Roper, said, "due to the unusually harsh winter weather, we're slightly behind our initial plans, but we expect to start selling residue gas this month."

The recent upgrade to the Tioga plant includes additions to ethane recovery, full fractionation and sales of natural gas liquids, according to Hess filings with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. At the beginning of the year, the company earmarked $350 million for the expansion of the plant.

According to the North Dakota Industrial Commission (NDIC), in the first part of this year, ~100 wells in North Dakota had to be shut down to reduce flaring. In the liquids-rich Bakken Shale, that resulted in an impact on oil production. The Hess plant expansion could help alleviate the flaring issue, and bring some of the wells back online. The company is hoping to meet revised production estimates of 250M cf/day over the next 12-24 months.

North Dakota's oil production rose by about 6,500 b/d to about 935,000 bpd in January 2014, Department of Mineral Resources data showed last week. Output in December dropped by 50,000 bpd from the month before.

Hess Tioga, North Dakota Plant Expansion Highlights

  • Hess announced that it would begin selling natural gas from its Tioga, North Dakota plant in March 2014
  • Weather delayed the expansion
  • Hess planning to meet revised production estimates of 250M cf/day over the next 12-24 months