US Authorises Golden Pass LNG Export Terminal

The U.S. Department of Energy (DoE) has authorised the Golden Pass LNG Terminal near Sabine Pass, on the Texas Gulf Coast, to export around 2.21 billion cubic feet of LNG per day (Bcf/d) to non-FTA countries. This move would be another milestone and position the country as a leading global LNG exporter.

The Golden Pass LNG Terminal was built in order to import LNG from abroad in 2009. The Golden Pass, a joint venture with Qatar Petroleum, ConocoPhillips, and Exxon Mobil Corp., shifted gears following the rise in domestic gas production through hydraulic fracturing and horizontal drilling.

U.S. Secretary of Energy, Rick Perry said in a statement that the announcement was an example of President Trump’s leadership in getting the United States as an energy dominant force.

There has been a rise in the U.S. natural gas drilling and meanwhile, the U.S. Energy Information Administration has predicted that domestic production would exceed 73 billion cubic feet per day, which is the second-highest tally as per records.

The DoE has estimated LNG exports to add an average of $20 billion per year to the nation’s economy up to 2040, in a 2015 report. The Golden Pass would be added to a list of LNG export terminals under development in the U.S. Cheniere Energy which began exporting last year from the Sabine Pass terminal, Louisiana.

Executive Director of the Centre for Liquefied Natural Gas, Charlie Riedl said in a statement that the Golden Pass authorisation was critical for the U.S. to recognise the potential benefits of its massive natural gas resources.

How many of the U.S. LNG facilities get ultimately built can be explored in times to come? Meanwhile, there has been a rise in the LNG export facilities in Australia and the Middle East. A report by Shell has placed the number of LNG importing countries set at 35, which is a 20% rise since 2015, inclusive of Egypt, Colombia, Jamaica, Jordan, Poland, and Pakistan.

Though there has been no announcement of when the Golden Pass would begin construction, it has been estimated that construction would provide around 45,000 direct and indirect jobs for around five years and another 3,800 direct and indirect jobs over the coming 25 years when the facility becomes operational.

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