From the Center for Liquified Natural Gas:
Newfound access to vast supplies of American natural gas from shale deposits is one of the most exciting domestic energy developments in decades, particularly for those in the U.S. chemical industry. Chemical manufacturers rely on natural gas as a source of energy and as a raw material, or “feedstock,” for countless chemical products. Numerous experts estimate that U.S. shale deposits contain 100 years of natural gas supply. This shale gas is a “game changer” that is helping to rejuvenate U.S. chemical production.
Over time, the chemical industry has voiced support for public policies that promote the availability of natural gas. And traditionally, the entire chemical industry has supported free trade principles in the context of U.S. energy policy. However, the export of liquefied natural gas (LNG) has caused a vocal minority within the industry to advocate for blocking U.S. LNG exports. It is important to note that these calls for blocking American trade do not represent the views of the entire chemical industry.
The American Chemistry Council (ACC), the trade association representing hundreds of companies in the business of chemistry, is very clear in its support of natural gas exports.
According to the American Chemistry Council:
“The Executive Committee unanimously expressed its opposition to any new export bans or restrictions on liquefied natural gas such as a moratorium on export terminals or the prohibition on the export of natural gas produced on public lands. The Executive Committee also reaffirmed its support for free-market policies that promote the export of American-made goods, including the export of liquefied natural gas.”
In a statement released in March 2013, LyondellBasell, one of the largest chemical manufacturers in the world with operations in nine U.S. states, echoed the ACC’s support for natural gas exports. Chief executive officer Jim Gallogly said U.S. liquefied natural gas (LNG) exports will help U.S. chemical producers, despite concerns by some CEOs that this would hurt the industry. This is because increased natural gas production to meet export demand would also produce more natural gas liquids (NGLs) which are an important feedstock for chemical producers.
“We as an industry support exports. We love free enterprise and exports,” said Gallogly.
LyondellBasell has backed up these statements by announcing $1 billion in investments to boost production at the company’s U.S. facilities.
Stephen Pryor, president of ExxonMobil’s chemical business, has also voiced support for free-trade principles with regards to natural gas exports. While speaking at an IHS World Petrochemical Conference in Houston on March 20th, Pryor reiterated that the chemical industry “must oppose protectionism in our home countries.”
Pryor directly addressed the vocal minority concerned about LNG exports by adding, “these proposals to block LNG investments, justified by artificial price caps, represent a selective and harmful departure from free-market and free-trade principles.”
As America’s largest export industry, chemical manufacturers understand the importance of free trade in a global economy.
Chesapeake Energy Corp,the Oklahoma-based firm is the No. 1 driller in Ohio.
Rig Count Interactive Map by Baker Hughes, an energy services company.
Shale Sheet Fracking, a Youngstown Vindicator blog.
The Ohio Environmental Council, a statewide eco-group based in Columbus.
Earthjustice, a national eco-group.
People's Oil and Gas Collaborative-Ohio, a grass-roots group in Northeast Ohio.
Concerned Citizens of Medina County, a grass-roots group.
No Frack Ohio, a Columbus-based grass-roots group.
Fracking: Gas Drilling's Environmental Threat by ProPublica, an online journalism site.
Pipeline, blog from Pittsburgh Post-Gazette on Marcellus shale drilling.
Allegheny Front, environmental public radio for Western Pennsylvania.