The Advocate recently published an editorial highlighting the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission’s (FERC) approval of a new Venture Global project on the Calcasieu Ship Channel in southwest Louisiana. This comes as the US is in the midst of an energy boom – with record production coming out of major shale formations like the Permian Basin in Texas.
The project will bring significant benefits to the state of Louisiana – including about $5 billion in capital investment and about 2,000 construction jobs. The high-paying jobs are expected to fuel economic growth in the region for years to come. Venture Global is also working on federal approval on another facility in Plaquemines Parish.
The editorial boasts Louisiana has been able to provide a steady flow of natural gas through a strong pipeline network, and foreign demand for natural gas is only expected to grow. Demand can be met through large LNG terminals along the Gulf Coast like Venture Global’s. The Advocate goes into detail on demand for natural gas abroad and its role in Louisiana’s economy:
Demand has been growing in China, Japan and South Korea. Assuming that trade disputes over other products and services don’t derail America’s relationship with these important customers, the LNG business is likely to expand. The U.S. is now the fastest-growing LNG exporter.
This kind of economic benefit couldn’t come fast enough for Louisiana’s delegation in Congress. “The permit approval process is just like the rest of bureaucracy: burdensome and slow,” said U.S. Sen. John N. Kennedy, R-Madisonville. The good news, though, is that FERC aims to use the new project as a template for faster evaluation of these big projects. U.S. Sen. Bill Cassidy, a Baton Rouge Republican, sponsored legislation to expedite approval of small-scale shipments of LNG, and its provisions were adopted and implemented last year by the Trump administration.