ConocoPhillips has asked the Department of Energy (DOE) to renew its authorization to export liquefied natural gas (LNG) from the terminal facilities owned by Freeport LNG Development LP on Quintana Island, TX.

The Houston-based producer is seeking permission to export LNG that previously had been imported into the United States from foreign sources in an amount up to the equivalent of 500 Bcf of natural gas over a two-year period beginning on Nov. 30. ConocoPhillips’ existing authority expires on Nov. 29.

“ConocoPhillips…requests that such authorization extend to LNG supplies imported from foreign sources to which ConocoPhillips holds title, as well as to LNG supplies imported from foreign sources that ConocoPhillips may export on behalf of other entities who themselves hold title.”

The producer wants clearance to export to any country with the capacity to import LNG via tanker and with which trade is not prohibited by United States law or policy.

“ConocoPhillips’ interest in securing this blanket authorization is driven by its desire to continue to utilize and optimize the long-term LNG terminalling capacity for which it has contracted at Freeport LNG and its need for flexibility to respond to periodic changes in domestic and world markets for natural gas and LNG,” the producer said.

“There is no domestic need for the LNG to be exported by ConocoPhillips,” the company said. In the Annual Energy Outlook for 2011, DOE said “the evidence of record indicates that United States’ consumers continue to have access to substantial quantities of natural gas sufficient to meet domestic demand from multiple other sources at competitive prices without drawing on the LNG which Freeport LNG seeks to export.”

Moreover, the “record of evidence also supports the conclusion that the foreign-sourced LNG that ConocoPhillips may export from the Freeport LNG facilities…are not needed to meet domestic demand,” ConocoPhillips told DOE in its application.

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