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US ELECTIONS: Trump would emphasize energy infrastructure build-out: adviser

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US ELECTIONS: Trump would emphasize energy infrastructure build-out: adviser

Highlights

Energy to lead recovery from coronavirus depression: Brouillette

LNG developers see strong market fundamentals

New York — President Donald Trump would use a second term to continue to push for faster natural gas pipelines and LNG export terminals build-out, prioritizing gas infrastructure as a matter of economic growth and national security, one of his top economic advisers said Sept. 17 in Washington, DC.

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National Economic Council Director Larry Kudlow assured a panel of gas drillers, developers and marketers that the Trump administration is ready to fight the opposition to fossil fuels and further smooth the path for more US pipelines and LNG export terminals as the world market for gas grows.

"President Trump has put a premium on energy and energy dominance," Kudlow said. "POTUS will continue, if he's given the opportunity for a second term, to pursue the low tax, deregulatory policies that have made us the world's number one producer."

"I just want to say that the other team, if you will, has some bizarre plans that would do great harm to energy, to the economy, to jobs and so forth," Kudlow said. Cleaner natural gas has helped the US shrink its carbon emissions while growing its economy through 2019, Kudlow, Energy Secretary Dan Brouillette and others said at the Sept. 17 natural gas summit.

Brouillette said that energy will lead the recovery from the depression caused by the coronavirus and that he would keep working to lighten the permitting and paperwork load on developers. "We've solved the supply problem here in America. What is challenging us, and I think what is challenging the industry, is an infrastructure problem," Brouillette said. "We need more pipelines. We need more export facilities."

Having failed to stop shale gas production growth or stifle consumer demand, fossil fuel opponents are "stepping on the hose in the middle," Mike Sommers, president of the oil and gas industry's top trade group, the American Petroleum Institute, told the panel.

"We need support from federal government to permit intelligent infrastructure development, which also includes the ability to export our product," PennEnergy Resources Chairman, CEO and founding partner Richard Weber said.

"Well-funded, very left-wing" groups opposed to Equitrans Midstream's Mountain Valley Pipeline natural gas pipeline south out of Appalachia might succeed in cancelling that project in the wake of the demise of Duke Energy and Dominion Energy's Atlantic Coast Pipeline, Weber said.

"We can easily be supplying that demand in Europe from reserves right here in Pennsylvania," Weber said. "We can supply that energy. Same thing with China. There's so much opportunity."

Executives from LNG exporters such as Cheniere Energy, Tellurian and Venture Global LNG shared Weber's outlook on the world market. "The fundamentals of the market are even stronger" despite the coronavirus pandemic, Tellurian President, CEO and Director Meg Gentile told the panel. She expected the demand for cleaner-burning US gas would increase globally as more people focused on health issues following the pandemic experience.

India's ambassador to the US, Taranjit Sandhu, one of several ambassadors on the panel, agreed. Sandhu predicted that India's LNG demand would double in the next 10 years as more and more compressed natural gas vehicles are sold and driven in that country.

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