The United States exported more LNG than any other nation for the first time in December. More than 7 million tons of liquified methane-based gas left U.S. shores, more than Qatar or Australia. LNG was first exported from the lower 48 states just six years ago. Demand for U.S. LNG in Europe and Asia is driving up methane-based gas prices for U.S.consumers and LNG exports face increasing criticism from consumer, climate, and environmental justice advocates. In North America, 80% of increased methane pollution from 2000 to 2017 was driven by fossil fuels, and the U.S. fracking boom in particular.
Record-breaking LNG exports undermine the Biden administration’s climate goals, especially its pledge to cut methane pollution by 30% by 2030, the main target of its highly-touted Global Methane Pledge — between extraction, transportation, and combustion, methane pollution threatens to make gas more climate-heating than coal. (CNN, Bloomberg $, S&P Global, Al Jazeera, World Oil; Coal comparison: S&P Global)