Study reinforces case for accelerated LNG exports
Today, the Department of Energy (DOE) released a new study on the macroeconomic impacts of U.S. liquefied natural gas (LNG) exports. The new study, conducted by Rice University’s Baker Institute and Oxford Economics, examines export scenarios of 12-20 billion cubic feet per day (Bcf/d) – expanding upon the 6-12 Bcf/d scenarios studied in the 2012 DOE-commissioned report. The DOE will publish today’s study in the Federal Register, as well as a 2014 report by the Energy Information Administration (EIA) on the effect of increased levels of LNG exports on U.S. energy markets. The publication of both reports to the Federal Register will trigger a forty-five day public comment period.
Commenting, Center for Liquefied Natural Gas (CLNG) spokesman Casey O’Shea welcomed the release of the new study and its findings:
“By finding that through 2040 the United States economy will gain between $7 and $20 billion annually across expanded export scenarios, DOE’s latest study reinforces the case for increased U.S. LNG exports. In addition, these findings add urgency to the passage of the LNG Permitting Certainty and Transparency Act, which provides greater certainty for LNG export permitting process. Passage of the Act will help support America’s growing LNG export industry.
This report is the latest addition to the large body of existing research showing that we can export LNG without adversely affecting the availability or affordability of our abundant natural gas supplies. Furthermore, new LNG export projects would usher in a wave of economic prosperity and jobs across our nation – while offering our trading partners around the world a pathway to energy security and a cleaner environment.
This study reaffirms that the time for U.S. LNG exports is now. With the U.S. facing stiff global competition for the opportunity to export LNG, timely export permits from the DOE are becoming increasingly pressing. We call on Congress to support legislation ensuring that LNG export applications would be reviewed quickly – and to help America fulfill its potential as an energy powerhouse.”
Study after study – including those released by Brookings Institution, Small Business & Entrepreneurship Council, Deloitte, ICF International – have found that U.S. LNG exports would help create jobs, grow the economy, generate tax revenue for federal, state, and local governments, and enhance our energy security. In fact, DOE’s earlier report concluded, “[T]he range of aggregate macroeconomic results from this study suggests that LNG export has net benefits to the U.S. economy.”
The benefits of U.S. LNG exports are clear. But in order for these benefits to be realized, Congress must enact legislation to provide LNG project developers with greater certainty that their project applications would be considered in a timely manner.