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Energy nonprofit leader predicts Congress will move to protect LNG industry

President Joe Biden paused approvals of new exports of liquefied natural gas.

Published: February 13, 2024 8:01pm

Western Energy Alliance President Kathleen Sgamma predicted on Tuesday that Congress would pass legislation to protect the LNG (liquefied natural gas) industry amid the Biden administration's move to pause export approvals.

"We hope that there will be a likewise bipartisan passage of the bill in the House later this week," Sgamma said on the "Just the News, No Noise" TV show. "Representative Pfluger out of Texas has put forward a bill that would get the Department of Energy out of the business of licensing LNG export terminals."

President Joe Biden in January paused approvals of new exports of liquefied natural gas. European Commission Executive Vice President Maros Sefcovic indicated Tuesday that this pause would not have an effect on shipping U.S. supplies to Europe, according to Reuters.

"The FERC [Federal Energy Regulatory Commission] already regulates pipelines and interstate commerce and the terminals to export LNG overseas," Sgamma said. "But the Department of Energy, from a very outdated law from 1938, has this ability to come in and determine if an export license is in the public's interest or not." 

"That determination was made by the Department of Energy several years ago based on a 2018 study," she continued. "Since that time, it has been shown that we can produce more natural gas. We can export more. Like I said, we're the leading exporter in the world."

She further predicted both Democrats and Republicans would vote for Pfluger's legislation.

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