Co-hosted by the Center on Global Energy Policy at Columbia University and the Center for Energy Governance & Security at Hanyang University, this forum will focus on the impact of potential US natural gas exports on Asia-Pacific energy security. The unconventional natural gas boom has dramatically altered America’s energy landscape. Not long ago, the US was the world’s largest natural gas importer. By the end of 2012, 20 companies had applied to the US Department of Energy (DOE) for permission to export liquefied natural gas (LNG). While applications to export to Free Trade Agreement (FTA) countries are automatically granted, Korea is the only FTA country that is a large market for LNG. Therefore, nearly all companies have also applied for permits to export to non-FTA countries, which DOE is required to issue unless it finds doing so would be contrary to the public interest. To date, one non-FTA permit has been issued. In total, Asia accounts for 60% of current global LNG imports and is projected to be the fastest-growing LNG market in coming years.
While there has been considerable analysis of the US economic and environmental implications of LNG exports, there has been less analysis to date on the impact on Pacific energy markets, economic growth, CO2 emissions, or geopolitical and international security priorities. This forum will address these and other issues and attempt to lay the groundwork for future research projects and for sustained US-Pacific collaboration in assessing and refining policies and technologies that support safe and responsible natural gas development.