Macroeconomic Impacts of LNG Exports from the United States

National Economic Research Associates for US DOE

[Oil and Gas Journal] Increased natural gas exports would broadly benefit the US economy, a Dec. 3 report commissioned by the US Department of Energy concluded. “Moreover, for every one of the market scenarios examined, net economic benefits increased as the level of LNG exports increased,” the report by Washington, DC-based NERA Economic Consulting said.

The new report followed one that DOE’s Fossil Energy Office released in January. This report by the department’s Energy Analysis Office suggested that US LNG exports could lead to higher prices, more production, less consumption, and more imports from Canada. FEO asked for it in August 2011.

It commissioned the second study to determine how LNG exports could affect the public interest, particularly the nation’s energy and manufacturing sectors, FEO said on Dec. 5. It posted the new report into 15 pending LNG export applications DOE is reviewing, and will accept public comments on it until Jan. 24, 2013…

[Michael Levi’s CFR blog post, “The Five Most Influential Energy and Climate Studies of 2012”] […] 4.  This one is a toss up between Effect of Increased Natural Gas Exports on Domestic Energy Markets (EIA) andMacroeconomic Impacts of LNG Exports from the United States (NERA Economic Consulting for DOE). The first, published in January, forecasted large potential price spikes if natural gas exports went ahead; the second, published this month, concluded that price impacts would be limited and that macroeconomic gains would be had. These are basically the two poles in the ongoing debate over whether to allow liquefied natural gas (LNG) exports. They currently rate a tie. The Obama administration will probably announce its LNG export policy early next year. Then we’ll know which study was really the most influential…


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