America's Shale Gale
If there is one conclusion that should be drawn from the boom in U.S.
natural gas production, it is that supplies are so abundant that it
makes economic sense to export some of our gas to countries overseas. No
one could have imagined that possibility even a few years ago when the
United States was actually importing natural gas, with much of it
arriving on LNG tanker ships.
Today America is almost completely self-sufficient in natural gas. In fact,
we produce more gas than we can use, and soon we will not have enough
room to store the surplus gas. Even now, some of the gas produced as a
byproduct of oil drilling must be burned off or “flared” as a waste
product until customers can be found to buy it.
Yet there are those in Congress who oppose plans to export natural
gas because they are concerned that U.S. consumers and businesses would
wind up having to pay higher prices for gas. Proposed legislation has been introduced to ban gas
exports. Such fears are overblown. Natural gas reserves are so abundant
we would be foolish not to export some of the gas. There is plenty of
gas in the United States to meet domestic demand and support exports at
the same time.
Exports will encourage increased domestic natural gas production – a
boon for states looking for investments and jobs from the oil and gas
industry. The shale revolution is transforming the world energy
landscape and reshaping our energy future. It’s time to embrace its full
economic potential by allowing exports of America’s abundant natural