05 March 2012 16:01 [Source: ICIS news]
MEDELLIN, Colombia (ICIS)--Petrobras started a third train at the Sabalo natural gas processing plant in Bolivia as part of an expansion at the country's San Antonio hydrocarbon exploration block, the Brazilian state-run energy company said on Monday.
The third processing train, which cost $115m (€87m), is part of a second phase of development at the Sabalo field that will include three new natural gas wells and upgrades to natural gas processing trains 1 and 2, Petrobras said.
Total investments for the second development phase will be about $300m, the company said.
Petrobras has increased investments in Bolivia recently as the country is a key supplier of natural gas to Brazil. About 70% of the natural gas consumed in Sao Paulo, Brazil's industrial hub, comes from Bolivia, according to the Brazilian Ministry of Mines and Energy.
With the third processing train operational, natural gas production at the San Antonio block will rise to 17m cbm/day, Petrobras said.
The processing trains remove contaminants, separate and stabilise the gas before product enters the pipeline system.
Beginning in June 2012, production of natural gas liquids (NGL) will increase from 16,900 bbl/day to 20,000 bbl/day/day, according to Petrobras.
NGLs are used as petrochemical feedstocks, home heating fuels, refinery blending and agricultural crop drying. NGLs, include ethane, propane, normal butane, isobutane and natural gasoline.
($1 = €0.76)
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