WASHINGTON — The Energy Department announced today that it has issued a conditional authorization for the Alaska LNG Project, LLC (Alaska LNG) to export domestically produced liquefied natural gas (LNG) to countries that do not have a Free Trade Agreement (FTA) with the United States. Subject to environmental review and final regulatory approval, Alaska LNG, in the Nikiski Area of the Kenai Peninsula, Alaska is authorized to export LNG up to the equivalent of 2.55 billion standard cubic feet per day (Bcf/d) of natural gas for a period of 30 years.

Federal law generally requires approval of natural gas exports to countries that have an FTA with the United States. For countries that do not have an FTA with the United States, the Natural Gas Act directs the Department of Energy to grant export authorizations unless the Department finds that the proposed exports “will not be consistent with the public interest.”

The Department considered the Alaska application separately from other currently pending LNG export applications in the lower-48 states due to the relative geographic isolation of the natural gas resources on Alaska’s North Slope. North Slope gas has been a stranded resource unavailable to commercial markets. The project proposed by Alaska LNG includes a pipeline intended to make North Slope gas accessible to consumers.

The full conditional authorization for Alaska LNG can be found here.

LNG Tanker photo courtesy of Shutterstock.