Senator John Hoeven last week met with U.S. Energy Secretary Ernest Moniz to push a range of issues important to North Dakota, one of which is a possibility of expediting LNG exports permissions.
Hoeven urged Moniz’s to expedite the permitting process at DOE to approve LNG exports terminals. Currently, North Dakota flares $1.5 million of natural gas a day, energy that could be captured and marketed, but the state lacks the infrastructure to do so. The problem is the long, expensive DOE approval process necessary to get an export permit. It currently takes 180 to 270 days for the federal government to approve a drilling permit in North Dakota.
Today, ConocoPhillips’s Kenai LNG terminal in Alaska, is the only natural-gas export terminal in the U.S. The DOE has given final approval to another in Louisiana, which will begin exporting by the end of 2015. Six more are conditionally approved and another 26 are still under review, the majority of which have waited more than a year for a decision
The senator has introduced the North Atlantic Energy Security Act, a measure that would cut the red tape holding up energy production and infrastructure development, reduce flaring and expedite liquid natural gas (LNG) exports to America’s allies.
Hoeven also offered to introduce an amendment help expedite the process by requiring a national interest determination within a set number of days following completion of the Federal Energy Regulatory Agency. The senator said he will work with the secretary to craft the language in a workable way.
Press Release, August 5, 2014; Image: hoeven.senate.gov