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Ohio Utica Shale

Texas firm to turn natural gas into liquids in Ashtabula County

By Bob Downing Published: September 24, 2013

From the PR Newswire:

Pinto Energy LLC (Pinto), a developer of smaller scale Gas-to-Liquids (GTL) facilities, is pleased to announce its Ashtabula GTL project.


The 2,800 barrel per day (bpd) plant will be built at Pinto's 80-acre industrial site to the east of Ashtabula, Ohio. It will convert abundant low-cost natural gas from the Utica and Marcellus shale region, into high value specialty products (solvents, lubricants and waxes), as well as ultra clean transportation fuels.

The state of the art GTL facility will create 30 new, direct, well-paying jobs, 400 temporary construction jobs, as well as result in the creation of an estimated 112 indirect jobs, to give a total of 542 local jobs. Pinto recently filed the project's air and water permits, and is in discussions with regional economic authorities for further local support. 

"Pinto is pleased to be joining the Ashtabula community," stated Guy Dove, Chairman of Pinto Energy. "By building one of the first North American GTL facility in Ashtabula County, Pinto is creating well-paying jobs and extending the benefits of increased domestic energy production to North Eastern Ohio."

North American natural gas production has increased significantly in recent years, leading to persistent low natural gas prices and an increase in gas conversion projects. Gas-to-Liquids technologies, such as Fischer Tropsch (FT), have existed since the early 20th century, but recent technological advancements have radically transformed the GTL landscape. 

After a thorough review of the existing technologies, Pinto has chosen to utilize Velocys Plc (Velocys) FT technology.  Velocys advanced catalysts and proprietary microchannel reactors offer unparalleled efficiencies for GTL projects today. Pinto has agreed to commercial license terms with Velocys and made a down payment towards the FT reactors.

"Velocys offers the most efficient and cost effective GTL technology on the market today," stated Michael Reinart, President of Pinto Energy." Pinto looks forward to working with Velocys on our Ashtabula GTL facility and other GTL projects in the Pinto portfolio." 

Pinto has chosen Ventech Engineers International LLC (Ventech) as the project's EPC Contractor.  Ventech is a global leader in the design and construction of new modular refineries, and will build these GTL plants at their Pasadena, Texas fabrication complex. The modules will be transported to the Ashtabula project site for installation.

Ventech began designing the Ashtabula facility in April 2013. The plant design is expected to be complete at the end of 2013, and Pinto is seeking to start construction in the first half of 2014. Mechanical completion of the plant is expected in late 2015, with start-up in early 2016.



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Utica and Marcellus shale web sites

Ohio Department of Natural Resources' Division of Oil and Gas Resources Management State agency Web site.

ODNR Division of Oil and Gas Resources Management. State drilling permits. List is updated weekly.

ODNR Division of Geological Survey.

Ohio Environmental Protection Agency.

Ohio State University Extension.

Ohio Farm Bureau.

Ohio Oil and Gas Association, a Granville-based group that represents 1,500 Ohio energy-related companies.

Ohio Oil & Gas Energy Education Program.

Energy In Depth, a trade group.

Marcellus and Utica Shale Resource Center by Ohio law firm Bricker & Eckler.

Utica Shale, a compilation of Utica shale activities.

Landman Report Card, a site that looks at companies involved in gas and oil leases.FracFocus, a compilation of chemicals used in fracking individual wells as reported voluntarily by some drillers.

Chesapeake Energy Corp,the Oklahoma-based firm is the No. 1 driller in Ohio.

Rig Count Interactive Map by Baker Hughes, an energy services company.

Shale Sheet Fracking, a Youngstown Vindicator blog.

National Geographic's The Great Shale Rush.

The Ohio Environmental Council, a statewide eco-group based in Columbus.

Buckeye Forest Council.

Earthjustice, a national eco-group.

Stop Fracking Ohio.

People's Oil and Gas Collaborative-Ohio, a grass-roots group in Northeast Ohio.

Concerned Citizens of Medina County, a grass-roots group.

No Frack Ohio, a Columbus-based grass-roots group.

Fracking: Gas Drilling's Environmental Threat by ProPublica, an online journalism site.

Penn State Marcellus Center.

Pipeline, blog from Pittsburgh Post-Gazette on Marcellus shale drilling.

Allegheny Front, environmental public radio for Western Pennsylvania.