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US-EU Trade Truce To Boost U.S. LNG Exports To Europe

The agreement between the United States and the European Union to work together toward ‘zero tariffs’ is setting the stage for increased U.S. exports of liquefied natural gas (LNG) to the EU, U.S. Energy Secretary Rick Perry said on Thursday at the opening of the second U.S. LNG export facility at Cove Point, Maryland.

“It is a new day and I think a very bright day,” Secretary Perry said. “Our allies, they can count on, no strings attached that U.S. energy will keep flowing their way,” he added, as quoted by Houston Chronicle.

After a meeting with the President of the European Commission, Jean-Claude Juncker, on Wednesday, U.S. President Donald Trump said that the two agreed “to work together toward zero tariffs, zero non-tariff barriers, and zero subsidies on non-auto industrial goods.”

The parties also agreed to boost energy cooperation.

“The European Union wants to import more liquefied natural gas — LNG — from the United States, and they’re going to be a very, very big buyer. We’re going to make it much easier for them, but they’re going to be a massive buyer of LNG, so they’ll be able to diversify their energy supply, which they want very much to do. And we have plenty of it,” President Trump said.

The completion of the Cove Point LNG export expansion project makes it the second LNG export facility in the continental United States, after Sabine Pass in Louisiana.

Related: Saudi Arabia Halts Oil Shipments At Key Chokepoint

These two facilities now ship U.S. LNG to 30 nations on five continents, with a combined export capacity of 3.6 Bcf/d.

U.S. LNG exports increased from 0.5 billion cubic feet per day (Bcf/d) in 2016 to 1.94 Bcf/d in 2017.

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Another four LNG export projects are underway across the U.S.—Elba Island LNG in Georgia, Freeport LNG in Texas, Corpus Christi in Texas, and Cameron LNG in Louisiana.

By Tsvetana Paraskova for Oilprice.com

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  • David Jones on July 27 2018 said:
    This shouldn't be much of a surprise to anyone really, any deal would involve some concession to the US oil industry since this whole trade war was probably mainly about the energy transition some countries have been pushing, another example of what the fossil industry is willing to do to keep business as usual going. Every move this president makes exposes him as a simple subordinate to oil and other corporate interests (I am also wondering if the same might be true about his Russian counterpart to some degree, it would certainly give them something to agree on and a common enemy (the transition away from fossil fuels) to work against). It would seem these days, US republican presidents are mostly just fossil industry executives in chief. Everything else encompasses acts of throwing crumbs at their political base. No actual government actions that would benefit the country in the long run seem to be part of their agenda and the idea that this administration actually cares about the well being of any segment of the average population, whether it is at home or abroad, borders on the ridiculous. All their actions are intended to help sponsors and satisfy short term needs of their base in return for their support (who do not seem to understand that the longer the transition gets pushed back the worst it will be for them when it all falls to pieces and right now, there is a substantial chance that it will). If anything good comes out of this administration at all, it'll be unintentional. The "no strings attached" comment above is particularly amusing, not all of us are born yesterday.

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