Kinder Morgan Energy Partners (KMP) on April 1 announced that it will invest approximately $58 million to expand its chemical storage capacity. KMP has entered into a long-term contract with Methanex Corp. to support the construction of methanol storage capacity near Kinder Morgan’s Geismar Liquids Terminal (GLT) in Geismar, La.

KMP will build, own and operate the storage tanks and related infrastructure, including improvements to its existing dock at GLT. The assets will provide critical marine, rail and truck access in support of a 1 million ton per year methanol production plant being relocated by Methanex from Chile. The terminal infrastructure is expected to be in service during the second half of 2014, coinciding with the anticipated startup of the relocated plant.

The general partner of KMP is owned by Kinder Morgan, which says it is the largest midstream and the third largest energy company (based on combined enterprise value) in North America. It has interest in or operates approximately 73,000 miles of pipelines and 180 terminals.

KMP also has acquired Quality Carriers, Inc.’s 26-acre terminal located in Chester, S.C. The 19-tank facility currently provides storage for a single customer of 35,000 barrels and receives product by rail and distributes by truck.

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“The abundance of attractively priced domestic natural gas has led to a resurgence in the chemical and manufacturing industries,” said John Schlosser, president of Kinder Morgan Terminals. “We are very pleased to be able to leverage our existing footprint in Geismar in support of Methanex’s significant capital project, and look forward to continuing to provide logistical and infrastructure solutions for Methanex and others as the renewed industrial development continues along the Gulf Coast and elsewhere. We are also pleased to be entering the public liquid terminal market in the greater Charlotte area and look forward to growing that business with new chemical customers.”