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Nearly two dozen lawmakers are pressing the Obama administration to open the door for more exports of liquefied natural gas.
The push comes amid a surge in domestic natural gas production from shale rock formations that has caused a glut of the fossil fuel and kept domestic prices low.
Exporting some natural gas to foreign markets could boost domestic prices high enough to sustain current production levels, the bipartisan group of 21 lawmakers said in a letter to Energy Secretary Steven Chu.
“Production is outpacing demand and depressing prices below the break-even point for some producers,” the lawmakers said. “One answer to the growing supply and demand imbalance is to allow American producers to capture a share of a growing global LNG market.”
The lawmakers, who hail from states rich in shale gas bounty, warn that American producers could lose out to foreign competitors if the United States doesn’t enter the global LNG market swiftly. Letter signers include Republican Bill Johnson and Democrat Tim Ryan, both from Ohio.