US LNG enters European market

Bloomberg/Fuel Fix:
Within a decade of revolutionizing domestic natural gas markets, U.S. shale will for the first time enter Europe, a region dominated by Russian and Norwegian supplies.

Portugal will receive the tanker Creole Spirit, the sixth cargo from Cheniere Energy Inc.’s Sabine Pass facility, according to two people with direct knowledge of the matter. The first left the plant in Louisiana for Brazil in February.

Europe will become the third continent for U.S. shale gas, which has already turned the country into the world’s biggest gas producer and will make it a net exporter this year, helping contribute to an 18 percent increase in global LNG capacity through 2017, according to Bank of America Merrill Lynch. The flexible U.S. volumes, coming after five years of stagnation in global LNG capacity, have already been shipped to Brazil, Argentina and India.

“LNG coming out of the U.S. is probably the single most important thing that will transform the future LNG market,” Melissa Stark, energy managing director and global LNG lead at Accenture, said by e-mail. “It heralds the arrival of a global market.”

The Creole Spirit, which left Sabine Pass on April 15, is now in the Atlantic Ocean headed toward Europe, according to ship-tracking data on Bloomberg. It’s expected to arrive at the port of Sines in Portugal in about a week, one of the people said, asking not to be identified because the information is private.
It is a start, al;though in this case it is replacing LNG from Nigeria.  What is really needed is to get into the Eastern European market such as Poland so they can replace dependency on Russia supplies.  The story indicates that the pace of LNG shipments from the US is expected to pick up in a couple of years.


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