U.S. Net Natural Gas Exports in First Half of 2018 Were More Than Double the 2017 Average

From January through June of 2018, net natural gas exports from the United States averaged 0.87 billion cubic feet per day (Bcf/d), more than double the average daily net exports during all of 2017 (0.34 Bcf/d). The United States, which became a net natural gas exporter on an annual basis in 2017 for the first time in almost 60 years, has continued to export more natural gas than it imports for five of the first six months in 2018.

U.S. natural gas exports have increased primarily with the addition of new liquefied natural gas (LNG) export facilities in the Lower 48 states. U.S. exports of LNG through the first half of 2018 rose 58% compared with the same period in 2017, averaging 2.72 Bcf/d.

Total U.S. LNG export capacity reached 3.6 Bcf/d in March 2018. The LNG facility at Sabine Pass in Louisiana has an export capacity of 2.8 Bcf/d, which includes the recently completed Train 4. Cove Point LNG in Maryland, which has an export capacity of 0.8 Bcf/d, delivered its first cargo in March 2018 and entered full commercial service in April. In the first two full months of operation after the capacity additions (May and June), Cove Point exported an average of 0.57 Bcf/d (76%) of its nameplate capacity. Another four LNG facilities are under construction and planned to enter into service by the end of 2019, ultimately increasing U.S. LNG export capacity to 9.6 Bcf/d…

 

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