First ethane shipment from Gulf Coast arrives in Europe

Enterprise Product Partners LP's ethane export terminal in Morgan's Point , Texas.
Enterprise Product Partners LP’s ethane export terminal in Morgan’s Point , Texas.

The first shipment of ethane from the Gulf Coast has arrived in Europe, the U.S. Energy Information Administration reported Thursday.

Enterprise Products Partners, which opened the country’s second ethane export terminal on the Houston Ship Channel earlier this year, delivered its first shipment to Norway.

Production of ethane, a component of natural gas, has risen with the U.S. hydraulic fracturing boom, leading to increased exports. Most ethane, which is used to produce plastics and for other industrial uses, is delivered to Canada by pipeline. But with demand growing around the globe, marine shipments are growing.

The first U.S. ethane export terminal, located 20 miles southwest of Philadelphia with a capacity of 35,000 barrels a day, began shipping overseas in March. Enterprise’s export terminal, located in Morgan’s Point, has a capacity of 200,000 barrels a day.