Lighting the Fires of Commerce

On Wednesday, the Energy Department released a report conducted by NERA Economic Consulting regarding a move to increase U.S. natural gas exports and the possible effects on the domestic natural gas market.  Among the report’s key findings: “This report contains an analysis of the impact of exports of LNG on the U.S. economy under a wide range of different assumptions about levels of exports, global market conditions, and the cost of producing natural gas in the U.S… Across all these scenarios, the U.S. was projected to gain net economic benefits from allowing LNG exports. Moreover, for every one of the market scenarios examined, net economic benefits increased as the level of LNG exports increased.”  The potential economic benefits may soon result in some movement by the President, as Reuters noted, “The Obama administration has wrestled with how to manage the nation’s newfound shale gas for more than a year, putting export project approvals on hold pending the release of the economic report.”

The documents made available include: the U.S. Energy Information Administration’s analysis “Effect of Increased Natural Gas Exports on Domestic Energy Markets” as well as NERA’s study “Macroeconomic Impacts of LNG Exports from the United States” and a summary list of pending LNG export applications. The DOE is inviting the public to provide comment on the study.

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