HOUSTON – Golden Pass Products LLC, a joint venture of Exxon Mobil Corp and Qatar Petroleum, is seeking US authorities’ permission to export liquefied natural gas from a terminal near the Texas-Louisiana border, the Wall Street Journal said, quoting an executive.
Exxon and its partner would spend $10 billion to convert a new terminal near Port Arthur, Texas, into a facility capable of exporting 15.6 million tons of LNG per year, the newspaper said. It was built to import natural gas, it said.
If permission is granted, Exxon, the biggest natural-gas producer in the country, and its partner would spend $10 billion converting a recently finished terminal built to import natural gas into a facility capable of exporting 15.6 million tons of LNG per year, or approximately two billion cubic feet per day. The US produces about 72 billion cubic feet of natural gas a day.
The move acknowledges the dramatic shift in energy markets produced by the development of techniques to produce natural gas from shale formations across the US. After years of fretting about natural gas scarcity and spending billions constructing import terminals to bring the fuel from places as far as Qatar and West Africa, energy companies now seek to turn the US into a major energy exporter.
“The market changed from what we originally envisioned,” said Bill Davis, Project Executive for Golden Pass Products. “Something changed along the way-it was the discovery of vastly significant gas resources.”
The joint venture’s application is for export to countries with which the US has a free-trade treaty. It will submit an additional application for countries that haven’t signed free-trade agreements with the US soon, the company said.
Davis said it could take several years to get regulatory approval and up to five years to build the liquefaction facilities at the terminal. – Agencies