Kevin L. Burdick
Executive Vice President and Chief Commercial Officer at ONEOK
Thank you, Walt. Let's start with our Natural Gas Liquids segment. Rocky Mountain region NGL volumes increased 17% year-over-year and 12% compared with the second quarter 2022, driven by volume recovery following the April severe weather and overall volume growth, including higher incentivized ethane on our system. Volumes have remained strong in the region with September averaging more than 380,000 barrels per day. Third quarter Mid-Continent NGL volumes decreased year-over-year and compared with the second quarter, due primarily to lower ethane recovery on our system. In the Permian Basin, NGL volumes were unchanged year-over-year and compared with the prior quarter.
With the recent third-party plant connection in October, we expect volumes from this region to increase through the remainder of this year and into 2023. We also continue to see interest from customers seeking additional NGL takeaway out of the Permian, so we will continue to evaluate future low-cost expansions on our system. From a 2022 NGL volume guidance perspective, we expect to be near the midpoint of our guidance range, due mostly to the ethane rejection we have been seeing in the Mid-Continent and the impact of the April storms. Regarding ethane. Beginning in September, we started to see lower demand for ethane from the pet chems leading to more ethane rejection across most regions.
The decrease in utilization has been driven by lower NGL demand globally, especially in China and Europe, along with some pet chem outages. We expect ethane demand to remain muted somewhat in the fourth quarter and into early 2023. And this has been factored into our 2022 and 2023 expectations. As we sit today, we are seeing ethane and ethylene inventories starting to get worked off, which we believe will lead to increasing demand in 2023. As for ONEOK, it is typical that we don't incentivize as much ethane out of the Bakken during the winter season due to higher natural gas prices and natural gas demand, but we will continue to be opportunistic.
As it relates to our 2023 outlook, we expect the Permian to be in full ethane recovery, the Mid-Continent to be in partial recovery and the Rockies continuing to provide opportunities to incentivize recovery. Construction continues on our 125,000 barrel per day MB-five fractionator in Mont Belvieu, which we still expect to be completed early in the second quarter of 2023 and is reflected in our updated 2022 capital guidance. Moving on to the Natural Gas Gathering and Processing segment. Producer activity remained strong in the Rocky Mountain region with third quarter processed volumes averaging 1.4 billion cubic feet per day, a record quarter for us.
Our average fee rate also increased, reflecting the impact of contract escalators, higher volumes on higher fee component contracts and a larger percentage of our total volumes from the Rockies. On a go-forward basis, we expect this average rate to range between $1.10 and $1.20. Year-to-date, we've connected 244 wells in the region. We now expect to complete approximately 375 well connections near or at the low end of our guidance due to the impact of the April storms, timing of some wells coming on and availability of completion crews and materials. Activity still remains high, just some timing elements that we now expect will push a few large pad completions into next year.
These same factors also led us adjusting our volume expectations for 2022 to be near or slightly below the guidance range. There are currently more than 40 rigs and 18 completion crews operating in the basin, with more than 20 rigs and approximately half the completion crews on our dedicated acreage. As we've said before, approximately 15 rigs on our acreage to maintain natural gas production at current levels. But with more than 20 currently on our acreage, we expect to see higher well connections and volumes in 2023 compared with 2022. The 200 million cubic feet per day Demicks Lake III processing plant under construction remains on schedule to be completed in the first quarter and will bring needed capacity to the region.
The basin-wide DUC inventory remained stable at around 500, considering the increasing rig count and activity with half of those on our dedicated acreage. In the Mid-Continent region, we continue to see increased activity with four rigs now operating on our acreage and more than 50 rigs basin-wide. We expect steady to increasing activity and volumes through the remainder of the year and into next year with the majority of rigs basin-wide driving additional NGLs to our system. In the Natural Gas Pipeline segment, with strong year-to-date results benefiting from the continued increasing demand for natural gas storage and transportation services, we now expect this segment to exceed the high end of its guidance range of $400 million to $430 million.
We are highly subscribed for our storage service in Oklahoma and Texas at higher rates and for longer terms, including our recent expansion of our Texas storage facilities, which is now fully subscribed through 2032. Additionally, we are expanding our storage capabilities in Oklahoma, enabling an additional four billion cubic feet of storage capacity to be contracted. This project is expected to be complete in April 2023 and is nearly 90% subscribed through 2029, and we are also evaluating an additional expansion of our Texas storage assets. And lastly, before I turn the call back to Pierce, we began a compression electrification project on our interstate Viking Gas Transmission pipeline to improve operational reliability and provide future greenhouse gas emissions reductions on the system.
The project is expected to cost $95 million and be completed in the third quarter of 2023 and is included in our outlook. Pierce, that concludes my remarks.