Supports NGL pipeline plan, petrochemical industry

Published 8:34 am Monday, October 9, 2017

Dear Editor,

In a guest column appearing on Sept. 6 in the Danville Advocate-Messenger, Mr. Tom Ellis seemed to suggest that natural gas liquids (NGLs) have no place in modern society. In fact, they play a major role in America’s economy.

NGLs are naturally occurring elements that are separated from natural gas via refrigeration and distillation processes. Most people don’t realize that many products they use every day contain NGLs. The propane purchased at your local store to heat a gas grill is an NGL. That same propane can also be used in various residential, commercial and auto gas applications. Butane is another example of an NGL, which is commonly used in various gasoline blends that are routinely purchased.

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Over the last few years, NGLs have become a major feedstock for the petrochemical industry, which in turn, is driving a renaissance for U.S. manufacturing. The Appalachian region contains enough feedstock to attract $35 billion in new chemical industry investment, according to an American Chemistry Council analysis.

Finally, pipelines are among the safest ways to transport these products. Demand for takeaway capacity for NGLs in the Appalachian region has increased in recent years and local markets are not yet able to absorb that capacity. Without sufficient pipeline capacity, other modes of transportation may be, and possibly already are, overburdened.

Having a pipeline of readily accessible NGLs running through our state may spur more investment from the petrochemicals industry, which creates jobs and produces the household items each of us use daily. Kinder Morgan is one of the most reputable pipeline operators in the nation, and we believe they are capable of converting and operating current pipeline resources for NGL transportation.

Charles Gregory Higdon

President, CEO

Kentucky Association of Manufacturers