Opponents: End LNG exports despite DOE research

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There have been efforts recently to restrict exports of liquefied natural gas (LNG), even as a recent NERA Economic Consulting study for the Department of Energy finds that gross domestic product (GDP) could increase anywhere between $5 billion to $47 billion as a result of LNG exports. The NERA research indicates that LNG exports could be a net benefit under every cost scenario analyzed.

Those seeking restrictions believe that LNG exports could drive up natural gas prices, and contend that the U.S. could capitalize on the shale boom to keep prices low for U.S. consumers and manufacturers and to contribute to a comeback of the U.S. economy. There are also the traditional concerns of environmental hazards from hydraulic fracturing.

Proponents of LNG exports cite benefits such as bringing manufacturers back to the U.S. and billions in revenue energy investments bring to government.

American Petroleum Institute (API) President and CEO Jack Gerard calls new coalition efforts to restrict LNG exports "misguided" and warns that restricting trade would have negative impacts on the U.S. economy.

"America's newfound abundance of natural gas resources is a boon to all domestic manufacturing through lower energy costs, lower costs on raw materials and reduced heating bills," Gerard contends. "Restricting exports of energy as a 'strategic resource' makes no more sense than unnecessarily restricting the export of chemicals, agriculture products or cars, and such a backward move could violate international trade rules."

For more:
- see the report
- see this article

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