b'3.9 The natural-gas economyLNG infrastructure is expanding in the U.S., but not without its detractors.In mid-June, the Philadelphia City Council approved a plan to build a $60 million liquefied natural gas (LNG) facility in Southwest Philadelphia. The Passyunk Energy Center will be a public-private partnership between city-owned Philadelphia Gas Works and Liberty Energy Peter Buxbaum, AJOT Trust. This article was originally published onSeptember 23, 2019 in issue #694 Across the river in southern New Jersey, a group of New York investors plans to build an LNG port along the Delaware River, presumably to export LNG produced by a related com-pany with operations in north-central Pennsylvania. The investment group has also proposed to create a liquefaction plant near the source of the fracked natural gas, the Marcellus Shale fields, in Wyalusing, Pennsylvania.These developments are emblematic of whats going on in the United States, in what some call the new natural-gas economy. The U.S. is an emerging LNG supplier, accounting for four percent of global LNG exports in 2017. The country is projected to become the third largest LNG producer in the early 2020s, after Australia and Qatar. LNG Export TerminalsThe first LNG export terminal in the contiguous 48 states, in Louisiana, entered service in 2016 following Department of Energy approval, helping to make the U.S. a net exporter of gas in 2017 for the first time since 1957. The DOE recently gave its preliminary approval to retrofit an import terminal in Maryland to export LNG, a facility already connected to a pipeline that would bring gas straight from Marcellus Shale. About 16 other export terminal proposals now await approval by the DOE.According to a recent report, U.S. liquefaction capacity will have increased thirteen-fold by 2022 over the previous five years. The country is expected to have spent over $167 billion on new liquefaction terminals between 2017 and 2022, according to GlobalData, a data and analytics company.These developments are not without controversy. Environmentalists squawk when LNG projectsareannouncedincludingtheonesinPhiladelphiaandSouthJerseyonthe grounds that the U.S. should be weaning itself, and the rest of the world, off fossil fuels. Its worth mentioning, however, that, as fossil fuels go, natural gas burns a lot cleaner than some others, including diesel.As noted in a 2012 DOE report, which gave the thumbs-up to LNG exporting, U.S. natural gas prices increase when the U.S. exports LNG. Although the report identified a net benefit to the U.S. economy from exporting, chemicals manufacturers, which use natural gas as a feedstock, howled in protest. The use of LNG is also on the rise domestically to fuel vehicles. UPS, for example, recently added 50 LNG vehicles to its alternative fuel fleet as part of an investment of over $90 million in natural gas. But transporting LNG domestically on the water has its obstacles, thanks to the Jones Act. Policymakers in Philadelphia, New Jersey, and elsewhere, point to advantages from LNG in diversifying fuel sources for utilities and in the areas of economic development and jobs creation. The Trump administration is also encouraging U.S. producers to export surplus gas, especially to Europe. 60 THE UNCONTAINED www.theuncontained.com'