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The U.S. Sees Record-High Gas Deliveries To LNG Export Terminals

Deliveries of natural gas via pipelines to liquefied natural gas (LNG) export facilities in the United States hit a record high in the first half of 2023, averaging 12.8 billion cubic feet per day (Bcf/d), per data by S&P Global Commodity Insights reported by the Energy Information Administration on Monday.

Between January and June 2023, LNG feed gas averaged 8% more than the 2022 annual average and 4% more than the same period in 2022, the EIA noted.

High demand in Europe in April saw LNG feed gas hit a monthly record that month, at 14.0 Bcf/d. In May and June, gas deliveries to export facilities declined to average 13.0 Bcf/d and 11.5 Bcf/d, respectively, due to maintenance at some export terminals such as Sabine Pass and Cameron, the EIA said.

LNG feed gas levels are usually higher than LNG export levels because export terminals consume some of the feed gas to operate on-site liquefaction equipment, the administration notes.

This year, U.S. LNG exports are set to average 12.0 Bcf/d, per EIA’s estimates. Next year, the average exports are expected to jump to 13.3 Bcf/d as two new LNG liquefaction projects are expected to come online—Golden Pass and Plaquemines.

Despite concerns about cost inflation, developers of LNG projects in the United States have approved a record-high volume of export capacity so far this year, driven by rising global LNG demand and increased long-term contracting from customers willing to boost energy security.

Earlier this month, NextDecade took the final investment decision for the first phase of a new LNG facility in Texas after it secured $18.4 billion in funding. The first phase of the Rio Grande LNG will consist of three liquefaction trains, with Phase 1 having already secured long-term offtake commitments from buyers including Shell, Exxon, TotalEnergies, Engie, and several Chinese energy companies, as well as Portugal’s Galp, and Japan’s Itochu Corporation. 

By Michael Kern for Oilprice.com


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