The Whistler pipeline, which transports natural gas from the Permian Basin in West Texas to south Texas in the US, commenced operations in July 2021.
WWM Operating is the operator of the pipeline, while Whistler Pipeline, a consortium of MPLX, WhiteWater Midstream (WWM), and a joint venture between private equity firm Stonepeak Infrastructure Partners and West Texas Gas (WTG), is the owner of the pipeline. MPLX holds a 38% interest in Whistler Pipeline.
The 724km-long, 42in-diameter Whistler mainline originates from an interconnect with the Waha Header near Coyanosa, Texas, in the Permian Basin and terminates near Agua Dulce in south Texas.
The pipeline has an initial capacity of two billion cubic feet a day (bcfd). It enables the reduction of natural gas flaring in the Permian Basin.
The development partners made a final investment decision (FID) on the Whistler pipeline project in June 2019. The project was sanctioned after signing long-term transportation agreements with shippers for the majority of the available capacity of the pipeline.
Whistler Pipeline project location
The Whistler intrastate natural gas pipeline passes through 17 counties in Texas originating in Pecos County and terminating at Nueces County.
The pipeline receives gas from multiple upstream connections in the Permian Basin including the Agua Blanca pipeline and the Midland Lateral.
Whistler Pipeline project details
The Whistler gas pipeline includes a 724km-long, 42in-diameter mainline, multiple pipeline laterals, four compressor stations, and 22 metre stations. The other associated infrastructure includes mainline valve sites and launcher/receiver sites.
The four compressor stations are located at Waha in Pecos County, Rankin in Upton County, Del Rio in Val Verde County, and Big Wells in Dimmit County.
The 80.5km-long, 36in-diameter Midland Lateral originates near Garden City, Glasscock County, and terminates at Rankin Compressor Station in Upton County. The Midland Lateral serves gas processors in the Midland Basin.
The other pipeline laterals include the 6.6km-long, 12in-diameter Rebel Lateral, the 8.34km-long, 16in-diameter Navitas Lateral, the 0.37km-long, 12in-diameter Targa Driver Lateral, the 5.6km-long, 12in-diameter Pembrook Lateral, and the 0.82km-long, 12in-diameter WTG Sonora Lateral.
Whistler Pipeline secured debt of £260.47m ($325m) from independent infrastructure investor Global Infrastructure Partners in June 2020.
First Infrastructure Capital and private equity firm Ridgemont Equity Partners also provided financing for the Whistler pipeline project. First Infrastructure Capital acquired WhiteWater Midstream in 2019.
Contractors involved in Whistler natural gas pipeline project
Strike, an infrastructure company based in Texas, US, was awarded a contract to construct a section of the Whistler pipeline, while ITI International bagged a contract to provide mill inspection services for the Whistler pipeline system in November 2019.
Erne Fittings was contracted to supply 42-inch elbows for the Whistler pipeline project in 2019.
Mott MacDonald was awarded a contract to provide project management and controls, engineering, procurement, and construction planning services, as well as coordination for the survey, environmental, and right-of-way services.
Waha gas storage assets
WhiteWater Midstream acquired the Waha gas storage facilities from Enstor Gas in February 2021. Located near the Waha hub in northwest Texas, the Waha gas storage facilities include six existing caverns and permits for five additional caverns. When fully developed, the total storage capacity of the Waha facilities will be approximately 10 billion cubic feet (bcf).
Waha Gas Storage, a joint venture between Whistler Pipeline and Delaware Basin Residue, will own the Waha gas storage assets. Delaware Basin Residue owns the Agua Blanca pipeline. Agua Blanca’s Waha header system will be connected to the Waha storage assets.
The Waha gas storage facilities will provide storage access to customers of both the Agua Blanca and Whistler pipelines.