STANLEY Preparations are ramping up for a first-of-its-kind oil transportation facility east of Stanley.
EOG Resources Inc., formerly known as Enron Oil and Gas, is preparing to utilize a railroad-based system to transfer its crude oil from Stanley to Oklahoma for refining.
North Dakota has been faced with a shortage of pipeline capacity to export its crude resources for quite some time. By utilizing the rails, EOG hopes to get a portion of its oil to market faster and more efficiently.
Construction began on the facility began in mid-2009. Watco Transload and Intermodal Services is partnering with EOG in the endeavor.
Testing should begin soon at the facility, according to Liz Ivers, public relations director at EOG. However, due to the highly competitive environment in the petroleum field and the unique nature of the project, Ivers declined to discuss specifics about the operation. Requests made by The Minot Daily News to visit on-site for photographs were also politely declined "until the facility is further along and in operation," Ivers said in an e-mail message.
However, EOG did release some information about the project.
"The eventual targeted capacity of the system is one 100-car unit train per day with a maximum capacity of 60,000 gross barrels of oil per day, although initial shipments may be less," according to an EOG informational release provided by Ivers. "EOG developed the concept of rail shipment for its crude oil because current pipeline capacity out of the Bakken (formation) is full."
EOG also states that it is likely to explore the options of purchasing third-party crude oil to augment the EOG volumes on the unit trains. The oil will be transported to Stroud, Okla., then transported via a short pipeline to Cushing, Okla., for refining.
EOG states it was the second-largest Bakken producer in 2008, holding approximately 500,000 net acres.