Operations at the Tower natural gas processing plant north of Dawson Creek have started ahead of schedule and under budget, Encana says.
The plant's start up began Sept. 20 and is in the process of ramping up to its 200 million cubic feet per day capacity.
The plant, budgeted at $715 million, is the first of three expected to start up before the end of the year and supports the Cutbank Ridge Partnership's condensate-focused growth plan in Northeast B.C.
"The Tower plant startup, delivered ahead of schedule and under budget, is an important milestone in our strategy and five-year plan," Encana President and CEO Doug Suttles said.
"Liquids growth in the Montney is a key driver in expanding our corporate margin and delivering quality returns."
The Cutbank Ridge Partnership includes Encana and Cutbank Dawson Gas Resources Ltd., a subsidiary of Mitsubishi Corporation.
Encana is building three midstream facilities in the South Peace—Tower, Sunrise, and Saturn—on behalf of Veresen Midstream, which will more than double the company's liquids production in the Montney from the fourth quarter of 2016 to the fourth quarter of 2017.
Veresen, which is providing midstream services to the partnership, funds and owns the facilities while Encana will pay to use them through a 30-year fee-for-service agreement.
The Sunrise plant is expected to start up in mid-October with a capacity of 400 mmcf/d.
The Saturn plant is expected to have one of its two 200 mmcf/d trains in-service by year-end, followed by its second train in the first half of 2018.
Those will also become operational ahead of schedule and under budget, Encana says.
Encana says its liquids and gas volumes in the Montney are expected to grow throughout 2018 as drilling programs bring the plants to full capacity.
When all three plants become operation, Veresen Midstream will have 1.5 bcf/d of gas processing capacity in operation.