This website is a project of the Center for Liquefied Natural Gas (CLNG), comprised of a broad coalition of natural gas exploration and production companies, shippers, terminal operators and developers, and energy trade associations. CLNG seeks to facilitate a fact-based dialogue with all stakeholders – the public, media, elected officials, regulators and manufacturers – on the benefits of liquefied natural gas (LNG) for consumers and communities here in the United States and abroad.
Natural gas is a key component of our domestic energy portfolio and supports millions of jobs across dozens of industries. As the cleanest burning fossil fuel, natural gas is a leading energy choice for fueling American homes and businesses. And with recent technological advancements that combine two age-old processes – horizontal drilling and hydraulic fracturing – the United States is now the leading producer of natural gas, according to a recent Energy Information Agency (EIA) report. Quite the feat when you consider just a few short years ago many experts predicted that natural gas production was on the decline in the United States.
According to the EIA, between 2005-2010, natural gas production in the United States increased 18 percent, “mainly due to growth in shale gas production” and “improved site planning and field optimization, multi-well drilling from a single pad, rising associated natural gas production from oil plays, and improved drill-bit technology.”
What does this mean for consumers here in the United States? More jobs, more affordable energy and increased economic opportunity.
And how does this impact global economies? With the vast quantities of natural gas being discovered in shale formations across the United States, for the first time in nearly 30 years our nation has been given the opportunity not only to provide clean-burning natural gas to our friends and allies around the world, but also to reduce our trade deficit that was largely driven by decades of importing energy.
These extensive new discoveries of natural gas provide energy producers here at home with the opportunity to export natural gas in the form of LNG in a safe and environmentally responsible manner. For more than 50 years, LNG has been safely and securely shipped around the world to meet energy demand. What’s different today? Instead of the United States being on the receiving end of these shipments, we now have enough natural gas here at home not only to meet our domestic needs, but also the capacity to control our energy future and ship natural gas to other counties.
What is LNG? It’s simply natural gas in a liquid form. It is the same natural gas that more than 65 million American consumers use each and every day to heat their homes and cook their meals. The only difference is that the gas is transformed into a liquid by cooling the methane molecules to -260° Fahrenheit. By converting the gas to a liquid, greater quantities can be transported in a cost-effective manner over longer distances.
The liquefaction process reduces the volume of natural gas by a factor of more than 600. To visualize this process, albeit in much simpler terms, think of a beach ball being reduced to the size of a ping-pong ball.
The liquefaction process allows natural gas to be transported efficiently by ship or as a transportation fuel in trucks. Once the LNG reaches its destination, it is unloaded from ships at import terminals or from trucks at peak shaving facilities where it is stored as a liquid until the temperature rises and it is transformed back into a gaseous state.
Once the LNG is transformed back into its gaseous state, it is then transported through pipelines for distribution to businesses, manufacturers and residential consumers. At this point, the LNG is not different than the natural gas we use to heat our homes, generate electricity and cook our meals here in the United States.
What does LNG look like? Like the natural gas we use in our homes, LNG is an odorless, non-toxic and non-corrosive liquid.
We hope this answers some of your basic questions about LNG and encourage you to explore this website and its resources.