Energy Dominance: That’s Our Story, Too

Tuesday, May 29, 2018

Port Arthur News | May 29, 2018

Payton Keith, of Harris, Deville and Associates, told the Texas National Maritime Association banquet, held at Lamar State College Port Arthur, that U.S. energy prowess is pushing the U.S. to global dominance in energy production and trade, and there’s little ahead to slow that down. That’s great news in this energy-rich state.

There’s more, much more. Much of that U.S.-produced energy is produced in Texas and shipped out of the Sabine-Neches Waterway, making our ports here leaders — that means first — in exporting crude oil and liquefied natural gas. We’re first in exports of petroleum coke, too. Our waterway is a big deal, not just to Texas or the Gulf of Mexico or the U.S. It’s a global force.

It’s improving U.S. trade position. It’s strengthening our international hand. It’s bettering the environment.

Motiva and ExxonMobil and Valero are all weighing expansions to the refineries. Total is expanding. Cheniere, so close in Louisiana you could reach out and touch it, is booming, the king of LNG. Near Sabine Pass, Golden Pass and Sempra, as Port Arthur LNG, will ship LNG — clean LNG — within a few years.

In 2016, our waterway became a net exporter. In 2017, the waterway shipped to 25 countries.

The Panama Canal — the top dog there is a Lamar grad — is ready for large LNG tankers. That will boost our LNG shipments to Asia.

The Russians have chilled their relationships with much of Europe, and our Northern European natural allies are looking this way for reliable shipments of LNG.

Here’s how good things may look by 2026:

  • LNG shipments may quadruple.
  • Crude oil exports may double.
  • Butane exports may grow from 120 ships to 210.
  • Since 2011, the Sabine-Neches has constructed, started or proposed almost $77 billion in industrial investment.

We’ve still got room to grow on the Sabine-Neches. There are 22,000 acres that can be developed. Overall, local people are enthusiastic about industry and welcoming to the industries — energy and petrochemicals — that make its future seem limitless.

The flood of 2017 — biblical in its proportions — sent this community reeling. But the hope for the waterway and the local industries it serves ought to provide Jefferson and Orange County people with some solace.

The challenges we face from Hurricane and Tropical Storm Harvey, though immense and real, may pale in the reflection of the prosperity that this region might enjoy.

The message Keith offered was this: Our national leadership won’t settle for energy sufficiency, but envisions U.S. global dominance in energy. That dominance cruises along our waterways.

Energy dominance is emerging for our country and we are part of it.

Embrace the value of the waterway. Spread the news.