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U.S. LNG Export Industry to be Worth $47 Billion a Year by 2020

A recent study carried out by NERA Economic Consulting on behalf of the US Energy Department has found that the economic benefits of exporting its cheap and abundant natural gas in the form of LNG far outweigh the negative potential of an increase in prices for domestic consumers.

Already more than a dozen LNG projects have been proposed by various energy companies across the US, all planning to export to Europe and Asia where gas commands a far higher price, however the White House has always been very reluctant to approve any of these projects and create a huge natural gas export market for fear of causing domestic utility bills to increase.

Related Article: Former Enemies Japan and Russia to Trade LNG?

Yes domestic prices are bound to increase a little, but the investment and jobs created by building large LNG terminals, along with the export earnings more than make up for a small increase in price.

Most Americans would be much better off.

Of all of the applications, only one LNG export terminal has been approved, that of Cheniere Energy (LNG) in Louisiana. Now that the report has been published many more projects are expecting to receive approval.

It was predicted that natural gas exports could generate $47 billion of economic activity in 2020, by which time several new LNG terminals would be in operation.

By. Joao Peixe of Oilprice.com

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  • Doug Sheridan on December 06 2012 said:
    Having worked in the natural gas industry in the early 2000s, I recall that it was perceived as an almost "certainty" that the U.S. was going to have to import LNG to meet future demand. Import and regasification terminals were built. Long-term contracts were signed. Then the shale revolution hit. Now it looks like, almost with the same "certainty", that the U.S. is going to be awash in natural gas for decades. Now those terminals and plants are now being rebuilt to liquify gas. But the rest of the world might end up awash in gas in 10 years as well, as it seeks to exploit its own shale-gas reserves. So, exporting may therefore not even be an opportunity. But our free enterprise system allows persons and companies that what to risk their own money positioning themselves for a possible export boom to do so. As long as public money is not used to subsidize natural gas exports, I say let them knock themselves out. And if they are right, let them keep the spoils.

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