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November 30th, 2016:

The U.S. Is Now a Net Exporter of Natural Gas

American Energy Coalition - November 30th, 2016

The U.S. has become a net exporter of natural gas, according to a recent article in The Wall Street Journal.

The U.S. has exported an average of 7.4 billion cubic feet a day of gas in November, more than the 7 billion cubic feet a day it has imported, the article states, citing data from S&P Global Platts.

“Overseas producers now have to deal with the growing clout of the U.S. energy industry, which is aggressively looking to ramp up its global market share to help offset a long period of low prices,” The Journal wrote. “It’s indicative of things to come,” Sid Perkins, managing partner at the brokerage Ion Energy Group told The Journal. Natural gas is “going to be taking on the characteristics of a global-macro market, like crude, where global factors will influence what happens to gas.”

Natural gas prices had dropped to a 17-year low, but the increase in exports gas caused prices to rebound by more than 80 percent, the article states. Gas exports have risen more than 50 percent since 2010. “The U.S. will ship gas equal to as much as a fifth of its annual consumption abroad by 2020, Citigroup estimates,” the article states. “The Energy Department says the country will be the world’s third-largest producer of liquefied natural gas for export by that year, trailing Australia and Qatar.”

A series of new pipelines running across the southern border helped shipments to Mexico reach an all-time high in August and accounted for almost 6 percent of total U.S. gas production, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA).

Shipments from Cheniere Energy Inc.’s Sabine Pass liquefied natural gas terminal have grown to average 1.5 billion cubic feet of gas a day since February, when exports from the facility began, according to The Journal. Cheniere continues to expand Sabine Pass, and several other export terminals are expected to come online starting in 2017 and 2018.

Plans to export natural gas to countries such as Singapore and South Korea, which have free trade agreements with the U.S., could be authorized quickly, the article states.

To read the Wall Street Journal article (subscription required), click here.


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