August 18, 2015 Leave a comment
July 15, 2015
Most of the proposed U.S. liquefied natural gas export projects won’t get built amid stiffening competition from foreign competitors who will flood the market with the supercooled gas as demand begins to slow, a new study finds.
Five U.S. LNG projects already under construction, including Cheniere’s two terminals in Louisiana and Corpus Christi, will cross the finish line, but beyond that, construction appears “increasingly unlikely” for the remaining proposals, according to the latest study unveiledby a task force of natural gas experts assembled by the Brookings Institution, a Washington D.C.-based thinktank.
It’s the latest report to raise doubts about the flurry of multi-billion dollar proposals announced in recent years that would soak up vast supplies of cheap U.S. natural gas destined for markets in Asia.
“We believe it will be increasingly difficult to finance new LNG projects, due to high upfront costs in combination with a substantial number of uncertainties which influence supply and demand,” the report said.
Developers have been rolling out proposals on the assumptions that U.S. natural gas prices will remain at record low levels while LNG prices in Asia and Europe remain high, offering North American exporters attractive margins. Developers also placed bets that U.S. LNG, which is linked to natural gas prices, would allow them to hold a competitive edge over foreign suppliers, whose LNG is tied to crude prices, which were relatively high until they began falling late last year.
The report found that there are flaws in those assumptions that call into question whether U.S. LNG projects will be successful.
“While the projected number of North American LNG export facilities is massive, closer examination of the projects’ financial realities offer a more nuanced story,” the report stated.
U.S. natural gas prices are expected to rise slowly, which could undercut the competitive advantage of U.S. LNG exports unless developers figure out cheaper ways to liquefy, transport and re-heat the gas. Natural gas faces stiffer competition from other competing fuel sources, such as cheap coal and renewables, and that waning demand makes it increasingly difficult for North American LNG projects to turn a profit, the report found. And collapsing crude prices gave a fresh advantage to rival oil-linked LNG projects in other countries.
With international oil price hovering just under $60 per barrel, Australia is more competitive than U.S. exporters when it comes to supplying LNG to lucrative and high-demand Asian markets, the report found.
U.S. projects are “poised to compete favorably” in the global marketplace because they’re cheaper to build, particularly the so-called “brownfield” projects that call for converting import terminals into export facilities. Developers also have access to cheaper energy and “significant skilled labor at a reasonable cost” compared to other countries.
But swelling demand for materials and labor could erode the U.S. advantage at a time when falling oil prices are making foreign projects more attractive, the report found.
“Given all these uncertainties, possible constraints and the fact that a significant amount of projects are permeating the market in the coming years, it may be increasingly difficult to finance projects going forward,” the report said.
You might know that Brookings is a conservative leaning think-tank.
After a quick search, I found the below linked report at their site, which may be the one being written about in the above report from Fuel Fix (what a lovely name!)
This could be useful to those fighting pipeline build-out.
Cécile Lawrence, Ph.D., J.D.
June 29, 2015
No evidence that DEC is attemptng to limit the expansion of the gas industry-pipelines, compressors, gathering lines that it finds detrimental to the environment. This expansion proceeds unabated even without allowing high volume hydraulic fracturing.
“In the end, there are no feasible or prudent alternatives that would adequately avoid or minimize adverse environmental impacts and that address the scientific uncertainties and risks to public health from this activity. The Department’s chosen alternative to prohibit high-volume hydraulic fracturing is the best alternative based on the balance between protection of the environment and public health and economic and social considerations.”
There’s this, on p. 9 of the findings statement –
Otsego 2000, Inc.
PO Box 1130
Cooperstown, NY 13326
Tel: 607/547 8881
From: K. Shimberg [mailto:email@example.com]
Sent: Monday, June 29, 2015 3:30 PM
To: Ellen Pope
Cc: firstname.lastname@example.org; Consternation PL; Protect Laurens
Subject: Re: [otsego-coalition] NYSDEC releases Findings Statement on Fracking
Thank you, Ellen! —
Yessss!! (For now, anyway.)
Does Cuomo make an official announcement now?
And thanks to the DEC and all the official & unofficial advisors w/ good science and good sense, and all the comment-&-letter-writers and rally organizers & attenders, bird-doggers, naggers, etc. — (all of us).
On to the 2 major interstate pipelines impending thru here awaiting DEC’s permitting or (we hope) denial, and bomb trains already travelling thru here as elsewhere, Seneca Lake unstable gas-storage caverns pending DEC final approval or reconsideration, PA’s HVHF waste trucked in to NYS landfills, and other adverse consequences still affecting NYS. And FERC continues to rubber-stamp industry requests w/ inadequate “mitigation,” and our POTUS and DOE keep pushing nat-gas development.
So — We’re encouraged and cheered by DEC’s/Martens’s issuance of these Final SGEIS findings, which nicely spell out the problems and reasons for “No Action” anywhere in NYS on permitting the dangerous dragon. But our work ain’t over!
— Kathy S.
Mt. Vision, NY 13810n
Assessment of the Potential Impacts of Hydraulic Fracturing for Oil and Gas on Drinking Water Resources (External Review Draft) | EPA’s Study of Hydraulic Fracturing for Oil and Gas and Its Potential Impact on Drinking Water Resources | US EPA
June 4, 2015
Assessment of the Potential Impacts of Hydraulic Fracturing for Oil and Gas on Drinking Water Resources (External Review Draft) | EPA’s Study of Hydraulic Fracturing for Oil and Gas and Its Potential Impact on Drinking Water Resources | US EPA.
This assessment provides a review and synthesis of available scientific literature and data to assess the potential for hydraulic fracturing for oil and gas to impact the quality or quantity of drinking water resources, and identifies factors affecting the frequency or severity of any potential impacts. The scope of this assessment is defined by the hydraulic fracturing water cycle which includes five main activities:
- Water acquisition – the withdrawal of ground or surface water needed for hydraulic fracturing fluids;
- Chemical mixing – the mixing of water, chemicals, and proppant on the well pad to create the hydraulic fracturing fluid;
- Well injection – the injection of hydraulic fracturing fluids into the well to fracture the geologic formation;
- Flowback and Produced water – the return of injected fluid and water produced from the formation to the surface, and subsequent transport for reuse, treatment, or disposal; and
- Wastewater treatment and waste disposal – the reuse, treatment and release, or disposal of wastewater generated at the well pad, including produced water.
This report can be used by federal, tribal, state, and local officials; industry; and the public to better understand and address vulnerabilities of drinking water resources to hydraulic fracturing activities.