A Strong Case for Exporting Marcellus/Utica Shale Gas

Yesterday the price of natural gas trading at the benchmark Henry Hub delivery point in southern Louisiana traded for $2.71 per thousand cubic feet (Mcf). At the Algonquin Citygate (Boston), where the price is known to spike due to pipeline shortages, the price was $2.59/Mcf. At Dominion South in southwestern Pennsylvania, the price was trading at $1.33/Mcf. And at the Tennessee Gas Pipeline Zone 4 Marcellus in northeastern Pennsylvania, gas traded at (don’t cry): $0.70/Mcf. A lousy 70 cents. (All prices are from the top notch NGI Daily Gas Price Index reporting service.) We are awash in natural gas in this country–a good thing. But we need exports and we need exports desperately or production will go down and prices won’t recover all that much. MDN spotted a press release from Platts touting their Japan/Korea Marker (JKM) service. In that release, they report the average price being fetched for natural gas trading in northeast Asia. You know how much they get for gas there? $8.01/Mcf. That’s 3x what gas is fetching on the Henry Hub, and 11x what it’s fetching at Tennessee Zone 4. Can we possibly make a stronger case that we need to export our cheap, abundant and clean-burning natural gas to other countries? Is it not a good thing to become a net exporter once again, instead of being indebted to the other countries of the world, countries that are gradually buying our country one piece at a time?…

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