EIA: Natural Gas Imports into US Fall

EIA Natural Gas Imports into US Fall

U.S. net imports of natural gas into the United States fell 14% in 2013, continuing a decline that began in 2007, the Energy Information Administration (EIA) said in a report.

Robust natural gas production in the United States likely displaced imports, which decreased by 8% in 2013 to 2,883 Bcf.

Based on preliminary data for 2013, domestic dry natural gas production increased by 1% to 24,282 billion cubic feet (Bcf), a new record, EIA said.

Abundant production of natural gas helped reduce U.S. reliance on foreign natural gas and helped maintain a high price differential between domestic and foreign markets outside of North America, increasing interest in the potential export of U.S. liquefied natural gas (LNG).

Net Imports

Natural gas net imports fell by 14% to 1,311 Bcf in 2013, the lowest level since 1989.

  • Total imports decreased by 8% to 2,883 Bcf in 2013 from the previous year’s level. Pipeline imports decreased by 6% to 2,786 Bcf, and LNG imports decreased by 45% to 97 Bcf;
  • Total exports, which increased in all but two years from 1997 to 2012, decreased by 3% to 1,572 Bcf in 2013. Pipeline exports decreased by 1% to 1,569 Bcf, while LNG exports, already lower than 2% of total exports, decreased to 3 Bcf. For the first time, the United States exported a small amount of compressed natural gas (CNG) to Canada by truck, totaling 0.1 Bcf.


Natural gas imports decreased by 8% in 2013 to 2,883 Bcf, the lowest level since 1995.

  • Nearly all (97%) of U.S. natural gas imports arrived via pipeline from Canada, which decreased by 6% to 2,785 Bcf in 2013. The United States imported a minimal amount of gas via pipeline from Mexico. Pipeline imports from Canada have decreased almost every year since 2007. In 2013, pipeline imports from Canada into the eastern United States decreased the most, falling 12% from the previous year. Increased natural gas production from the Marcellus shale in the Northeast likely displaced natural gas imports from Canada. In contrast, natural gas imports from Canada in the western part of the United States remained relatively stable compared with levels in previous years;
  • LNG imports decreased by 45% from the 2012 level to 97 Bcf in 2013, the lowest level since 1998. Even though U.S. natural gas prices increased in 2013, they remained unattractive compared with international LNG prices, which were two to four times higher than Henry Hub prices. LNG imports from Trinidad and Tobago and Yemen made up 83% of total LNG imports. LNG imports were lower from almost all trading partners, particularly from Qatar and Trinidad and Tobago, which decreased by 78% and 38% from the previous year’s level to 7 Bcf and 70 Bcf, respectively.
Source: EIA, May 29, 2014