Gas deliveries to LNG export facilities hit monthly record in July

Image courtesy of Sempra Energy

Natural gas deliveries to U.S. facilities producing liquefied natural gas (LNG) for export set a monthly record in July 2019, according to the Energy Information Administration (EIA).

EIA said on Monday that the deliveries were averaging 6.0 billion cubic feet per day — seven percent of the total U.S. dry natural gas production.

The Administration added that the natural gas feedstock deliveries to LNG export facilities were the fastest growing among all U.S. natural gas consumption sectors in the first seven months of 2019.

Natural gas delivered by pipelines to Mexico and U.S. LNG export facilities reached 10.9 bcf/d in July and averaged 10.0 bcf/d in the first seven months of this year, 30 percent more than in the same period of 2018.

It is worth noting that the United States has been exporting more natural gas than it imports on an annual basis since 2017, and EIA expects that U.S. natural gas exports will continue to increase as new LNG facilities come online.

EIA estimates that U.S. LNG exports set new records in June and July 2019 at 4.8 bcf/d and 5.2 bcf/d, respectively, based on Bloomberg’s tanker loadings data.

Natural gas feedstock deliveries to LNG export terminals averaged 5.5 bcf/d in June and 6.0 bcf/d in July, implying that about 15 percent of the natural gas feedstock sent to LNG facilities was used as fuel in the liquefaction process.

In the first half of 2019, two new liquefaction trains came online: Cameron LNG Train 1 in Louisiana in May and Corpus Christi LNG Train 2 in Texas in June. Current total U.S. LNG export capacity stands at 5.4 bcf/d across four facilities and nine liquefaction trains.

Two new LNG export facilities—Elba Island in Georgia and Freeport in Texas—plan to place their first trains in service in the next two months. Both facilities have been receiving small amounts of natural gas feedstock deliveries in preparation for LNG production.

The first train at Freeport is scheduled to come online in September 2019, and the remaining two trains are scheduled for the second and third quarters of 2020, respectively.

Current plans are to complete construction and bring the remaining trains at Elba Island, Corpus Christi, and Cameron online in 2020 and 2021.

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