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  • Writer's pictureStaff @ LT&C

Germany’s first LNG shipment came from this Louisiana export terminal

Germany’s first import of liquefied natural gas came from a Louisiana export terminal, according to the company that produced the fuel and shipped it overseas.

On Dec. 19, Venture Global LNG loaded roughly 170,000 cubic meters of LNG from its Calcasieu Pass terminal in Cameron Parish onto the Maria Energy, a tanker owned by Greek firm Tsakos Energy Navigation, according to a news release.

The shipment arrived in Germany on Tuesday at the Uniper LNG terminal in Wilhelmshaven, a city situated on Germany’s northern coast. Venture Global officials said the cargo is enough to power 50,000 German households for one year.

Germany has been seeking new sources of natural gas ever since Russia, its primary supplier, invaded Ukraine in February. The country rushed to strengthen its LNG import infrastructure, and it opened the Wilhelmshaven terminal Dec. 17. Uniper, based in Düsseldorf, operates the terminal.

“Venture Global is very proud to supply the first full cargo of LNG ever delivered to Germany, and we congratulate Uniper and the German government for their swift action to build the infrastructure needed to make this historic day possible,” Venture Global CEO Mike Sabel said in a statement. “As strategic partners, we look forward to providing long-term security of energy supply to our allies through the continued delivery of clean and reliable U.S. LNG.”

As Germany and other European nations have beefed up their LNG import capacity, U.S. export infrastructure has ballooned with it, particularly along Louisiana’s coast. So long as European demand for U.S. LNG continues to stay high, the state’s growing export industry should continue to see financial windfalls, industry analysts have said.

LNG industry leaders believe international buyers are eager to sign long-term contracts for the fossil fuel "due to the recent events in Ukraine, and the resulting effects on natural gas supplies," according to the 2023 Gulf Coast Energy Outlook from LSU's Center for Energy Studies. The report also suggests U.S. energy exports should grow in the long-term, creating a possibility of more Gulf Coast LNG shipments such as Tuesday's Germany cargo.

Feeding the demand for U.S. natural gas is its abundant supply and low price compared to foreign markets such as Europe or Asia. However, natural gas prices in both the U.S. and Europe have fallen recently.

Futures for Henry Hub, the U.S. benchmark for natural gas, were trading around $4 per million British thermal units Tuesday morning, according to global markets company CME Group. Those levels haven’t been seen since before the Russia-Ukraine war began, according to U.S. Energy Information Administration data.

A gap still persists between U.S. and European prices. Futures for Dutch TTF, the European benchmark for natural gas, were trading at roughly $24 per MMBtu as of Tuesday, though that price is down from $43 per MMBtu in mid-December.


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