Gas export project a double-edged sword

An editorial from The Exponent Telegram

CLARKSBURG, W.Va. — With the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission’s blessing, Dominion’s plan to switch its Cove Point terminal to be able to export natural gas is expected to gain momentum.

Dominion’s Jim Norvelle told Staff Writer Jeremiah Shelor, in an article published in Sunday’s edition, that he expects the project modifications to be completed in time to see Cove Point exporting gas overseas beginning in 2017.

That’s seems to be great news for West Virginia and other states that are at the heart of the Marcellus and Utica shale gas boom.

To ship natural gas efficiently, it must be cooled and converted to liquefied natural gas. Cove Point, originally designed to receive gas shipments from other areas, will now be retrofitted to ship gas elsewhere.

The project alone will create jobs. But the expansion of the marketplace for Marcellus and Utica gas will definitely create demand for the product, which should help the gas industry grow exponentially.

But in some ways, that demand is a double-edged sword…

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