Natural Gas: A Versatile Tool To Address ‘Both Energy Security and Deep Decarbonization Goals’

Energy Futures Initiative report highlights opportunity for additional growth in U.S. LNG export industry
May 4, 2023 10:00 AM ET
A map of North America with blue lines marking natural gas routes.
Enbridge's North American natural gas pipeline transmission system currently supplies 15% of LNG export facility on the Gulf Coast.

Global energy security and climate goals are parts of the same sentence—and American natural gas exports are the action verb.

Today, the Energy Futures Initiative, led by former U.S. Secretary of Energy Ernest Moniz, released a report in Washington, DC entitled The Role of U.S. Natural Gas Exports in a Low-Carbon World, highlighting the opportunity for additional growth in what is already a booming U.S. Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) export industry.

“Two unprecedented events—the COVID-19 pandemic and Russia’s invasion of Ukraine—have severely disrupted global energy markets. Countries, mainly in Europe but also throughout the world, have struggled to deal with the ensuing shocks to their energy supplies,” reads the report. “At the same time, the threat of climate change remains, and demands that energy solutions address both energy security and deep decarbonization goals.”

Natural gas, a cleaner alternative than other conventional energy sources, “can help countries meet both energy security needs and decarbonization goals,” adds the report. “As the world’s biggest natural gas exporter, the United States plays a crucial role in helping countries address both goals on a global scale.”

At Enbridge, we also believe that natural gas is key to society’s transition to a cleaner energy future by:

  • displacing coal in power generation.
  • backstopping the intermittency of renewables.
  • contributing to a lower-carbon footprint.

“Natural gas is essential to a clean, reliable and affordable energy future,” Enbridge President and CEO Greg Ebel said last month at our 2023 Enbridge Day event for the investment community. “LNG is the best way to enhance energy security and reduce emissions, and we're obligated to share our abundance in North America with the world.”

Enbridge’s vast, cross-continent natural gas pipeline network currently supplies 15% of LNG export capacity on the Gulf Coast, through our assets like the Texas Eastern Transmission, Valley Crossing and Brazoria Interconnector Gas (BIG) pipelines, and our recent acquisition of the Tres Palacios Gas Storage facility.

With some forecasts predicting Gulf Coast LNG exports to double in the next decade, Enbridge expects to be responsible for 30% of those exports by 2030, through projects such as the Gator Express Meter Project and the Venice Extension Project.

“In 2022, the U.S. had more LNG export capacity than any other country, and led the world in LNG export. Location matters,” noted Enbridge’s Cynthia Hansen, Executive Vice President and President of our Gas Transmission and Midstream business, at last month’s Enbridge Day event.

“We are fortunate to have an abundance of high-quality, low-cost natural gas reserves in North America,” she added. “We have an obligation to send energy to our allies around the world where it’s needed the most to help ensure safe, secure, stable supply; enable progress; and reduce global emissions.”

The Role of U.S. Natural Gas Exports in a Low-Carbon World report was sponsored in part by Natural Allies for a Clean Energy Future, of which Enbridge is a member.