This morning, ExxonMobil filed our submission with the U.S Department of Energy for the open-comment period of a recent study on the economic implications of LNG exports. That study concluded that natural gas exports would yield net economic benefits for the United States. Its conclusions also reinforce the fact that the country’s enormous natural gas resource base can support both growing domestic use of natural gas for manufacturing and electricity generation as well as LNG exports.
Last week, a small gaggle of companies petitioned the federal government to limit the ability of other companies to export their products – in this case liquefied natural gas (LNG). This small group – which calls itself America’s Energy Advantage (AEA) – is playing a weak hand, given what we know about the economic benefits realized by those nations that embrace free trade. Their anti-exports position is not helped by the “facts” the group is marshaling to defend its position that free trade for energy products will cause economic harm.
The technological revolution that has unleashed the tremendous increase in U.S. domestic energy production has turned traditional thinking about America’s energy and economic policies on its head. As a result, in just a short period of time our public policy debates have transitioned from multi-decade discussions of scarcity and limits to growth, to discussions of American energy abundance and the enormous benefits that it can offer. Yet not everyone has gotten that message.
Newsworthy events that occur during the holiday season often don’t get the attention they deserve. Such was the case with the latest study from the energy consulting group IHS Global Insight on oil and natural gas development from unconventional sources like shale, which came out at the end of 2012. The report’s most significant finding is that the benefits of unconventional oil and gas development are being felt even in those states without oil and/or gas production.