Imports of liquefied natural gas (LNG) into the United States so far this month have surpassed the previous monthly record set more than 2 years ago, according to a report from Pan EurAsian Enterprises.

Based on the pipeline volumes coming out of U.S. terminals, the Raleigh, NC-based energy advisory firm estimates that U.S. LNG imports this month to date have been 66 Bcf, exceeding the prior record of 63.6 Bcf in December 2004.

The sendout rates of U.S. terminals have been at high levels as well. But "after reaching an unusually high rate of regasification during the past two weeks, the rate seems to be dropping off again," the company said in its weekly report.

Total volumes coming out of U.S. LNG terminals were about 3.3 Bcf on March 20. But the volumes have since fallen to 2.2 Bcf on Monday (March 26) due to lower demand for the gas, according to Zack Allen, president of Pan EurAsian Enterprises.

The "LNG volumes are starting to drop off because there's no place for the gas to go. The weather has turned mild. Some is going into storage but not much" because the economic incentive isn't there, he said.

"We will be watching to see if LNG starts to push some of the higher priced U.S. natural gas production out of the market," Allen noted.

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