European Firm Signs Shale Ethane Gas Deal

PHILADELPHIA (AP) — A European firm has signed a deal to buy a type of Marcellus Shale natural gas liquid from Antero Resources Corp.

The Philadelphia Inquirer ( ) reports that the Austrian petrochemical company Borealis has signed a 10-year contract to buy ethane coming from the Marcellus and Utica Shale formations in Pennsylvania and Ohio. The liquid, a raw material in plastics production, would be piped to the Sunoco Logistics Partners terminal in Marcus Hook and loaded onto ships. Antero is based in Denver, Colorado.

The new agreement would start in 2016, when Sunoco expects its second Mariner East pipeline will begin service. The first Mariner East project is scheduled to begin transporting gas liquids this year.

Gov. Tom Corbett’s administration and gas-industry leaders support the pipelines, but some nearby residents oppose them.

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