Delayed Pipeline Construction Hasn't Stalled U.S. Exports Of Natural Gas To Mexico

Published: Thursday, August 23, 2018 - 4:59pm
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U.S. Energy Information Administration
Construction of some natural gas pipelines has been delayed over conflicts about the proposed routes.

A new study out this week shows that U.S exports of natural gas to Mexico are at an all-time high and continuing to increase even while pipeline construction has faced delays.

Arizona, California and especially southern Texas are exporting about three times as much natural gas to Mexico as they were a decade ago. That translated to more than $2.6 billion of natural gas exports in 2017, according to U.S. Census Bureau data. Exports totaled less than half of that just eight years ago.

“Very dramatic increase. And it’s going to continue,” said Victoria Zaretskaya. She’s a lead economist with the U.S. Energy Information Administration and author of the new report.

She says the upward trend has slowed in the past two years as pipeline construction stalled in Mexico, mostly because of conflict with indigenous groups who contest the pipeline routes. That’s been the case with the Yaqui tribe in the state of Sonora.

But Zaretskaya says several of the pipelines are expected to come on-line by the end of the year anyway, and the market for natural gas in Mexico continues to grow.

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