As the energy industry becomes more involved in discussions about climate change and the need for environmentally sound energy alternatives, natural gas will continue to take a leading role in the transition to cleaner-burning fuels and a greater independence from foreign oil. That is why the Utica and Marcellus shales are emerging as critical factors in America’s energy strategy and one answer to an energy-hungry economy. The nation's shale reservoirs are estimated to contain more than two quadrillion cubic feet of natural gas, a supply of clean, affordable, American natural gas that will last more than 200 years. This energy supply is larger than all of Saudi Arabia's oil reserves, and it is cleaner, less expensive, and perhaps most important — it is American.
Caiman provides the necessary infrastructure to match increased drilling activity in these emerging areas and keep pace with growing production volumes is critical.
We were proud to be part of this important effort in the Marcellus Shale where we worked alongside many of America's leading producers to create value for the nation, the people of West Virginia, our customers, and investors. We began our work in the Marcellus in 2009 and on April 27, 2012. Williams Partners (NYSE: WPZ) acquired Caiman Eastern Midstream, LLC and our West Virginia assets for $2.5 billion. We are very proud of the sizable rich gas system we built in the Marcellus and the great relationships Caiman developed with producers and the people of West Virginia.
We are continuing our work in the Utica Shale where the development of this vast resource requires even more midstream infrastructure, including gas, oil, and condensate gathering pipelines along with processing, fractionation, and de-ethanization facilities. On December 20, 2012 we announced the formation of Blue Racer Midstream, LLC, a joint venture between Caiman Energy II and Dominion (NYSE: D). Blue Racer provides a vast array of midstream infrastructure to producers working in the rich gas region of the Utica shale. Assets include 500 miles of Dominion East Ohio's rich gas gathering network, the Natrium Processing and Fractionation Complex in Marshall County, West Virginia; the Berne Natural Gas Processing Plant in Monroe County, Ohio; the Dominion Transmission pipeline connecting Natrium and Berne to the gathering system; and expanded pipelines, processing and other facilities that we will develop as activity in the play moves forward.
Caiman’s commitment in the Utica through Blue Racer is one of many being made across the country in the interest of economic development as well as energy independence. The many benefits to Ohio mirror what we experienced in West Virginia, including job creation which has been noted by economists and industry leaders across Ohio.
The development of the Utica and all of America's abundant natural gas reserves requires a collaborative effort between producers and midstream companies like Blue Racer. All of us have committed enormous amounts of manpower and capital to secure the nation's new energy future and at the same time, stimulate the economy as the nation reaches toward recovery.
As one of the major players moving into the Utica, we have both the available capital and the expertise to make a major impact. We look forward to continuing to direct our efforts toward building state-of-the-art infrastructure that will service quality natural gas production for a long time to come.
Caiman Energy II, LLC