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API Study Highlights Economic Benefits of LNG Exports

In order to inform the current policy debate surrounding the granting of licenses for U.S. exports of liquefied natural gas (LNG), the American Petroleum Institute (API) commissioned ICF International to undertake a study of the energy market and economic impacts of LNG exports. The following table shows the key findings in terms of the average change in employment, GDP, and natural gas prices attributed to LNG exports between 2016 and 2035. Employment and GDP impacts are incremental changes relative to the Zero Exports Case.

  • The net effects on U.S. employment from LNG exports are projected to be positive with average net job growth of 73,100 to 452,300 between 2016 and 2035, including all economic multiplier effects. This wide estimated range reflects the fact that the net job impacts will depend, in part, on how much “slack” there is in the economy and how much the demand for LNG-export-related labor will “crowd out” other labor demands. Manufacturing job gains average between 7,800 and 76,800 net jobs between 2016 and 2035, including 1,700-11,400 net job gains in the specific manufacturing sectors that include refining, petrochemicals, and chemicals.
  • The net effect on annual U.S. GDP of LNG exports is expected to be positive at about $15.6 to $73.6 billion annually between 2016 and 2035, depending on LNG export case and GDP multiplier effect. This includes the impacts of additional hydrocarbon liquids that would be produced along with the natural gas, greater petrochemical (olefins) production using more abundant natural gas liquids feedstock, and all economic multiplier effects.

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