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Decreased demand for liquefied natural gas could impact Texas economy

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(Texas News Service) Workers in the oil and gas industry are warily monitoring the supply and demand of liquefied natural gas, or LNG. Texas is one of the largest producers of LNG in the country and a report from the nonprofit Institute for Energy Economics and Financial Analysis shows while there is a surplus of the fuel, demand for the product is declining.

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Sam Reynolds, research lead for the Institute for Energy Economics and Financial Analysis and report co-author, said current and future operations in the Lone Star State could be adversely impacted.

"There are currently five LNG projects under construction primarily in Texas and Louisiana. You've got the Golden Pass LNG facility, the Rio Grande LNG facility, Port Author in Texas as well as the Corpus Christi LNG facility," he explained.

The Texas oil and gas industry pumps more than $26 million in state and local taxes into the state's economy annually.

Because of the decrease in demand for liquefied natural gas, the Biden administration has paused new LNG export projects that are not already under construction to assess the impact on the international market. Reynolds said the demand for the fuel started declining following Russia's invasion of Ukraine in 2022.

"Prices for LNG skyrocketed, globally. LNG became one of the most expensive fuels available," he continued. "And as a result, countries in Europe, countries in northeast Asia really strengthened their or accelerated measures to reduce their dependence on LNG. "

The United States started its first LNG export terminal in 2016 and is now the world's largest supplier of the fuel, followed by Qatar and Australia.