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Natural Gas Regulation

Natural Gas Regulation

The Natural Gas Act of 1938, as amended, requires any person who wishes to import and/or export natural gas, (including liquefied natural gas, compressed natural gas, compressed gas liquids, etc.) from or to a foreign country must first obtain an authorization from the Department of Energy. The authorizations are granted by the Office of Regulation and International Engagement, Division of Natural Gas Regulation. 

DOE grants two types of authorizations, short-term (blanket) and long-term authorizations. A short-term authorization enables a company to import and/or export natural gas on a short-term or spot market basis for a period of up to two years. Long-term authorizations are generally used when a company has a signed gas purchase or sales agreement/contract, or tolling agreement, or other agreement resulting in imports/exports of natural gas, for a period of time longer than two years.

If you would like to learn more about this process, please see our page on How to Obtain Authorization to Import and/or Export Natural Gas and LNG.

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Recent Orders Issued by the Energy Department:

  • Carib Energy (USA) LLC - Opinion and Order 3937, Granting Long-Term, Multi-Contract Authorization to Export LNG in ISO Containers loaded at  desiginated Pivotal LNG, Inc. Facilities and Exported by Vessel to Non-FTA Nations in Central America, South America, or the Caribbean. (11/28/16) 
  • Magnolia LNG, LLC - Opinion and Order 3909 Granting Long-Term, Multi-Contract Authorization to Export LNG by Vessel from the proposed Magnolia Terminal to be constructed in Lake Charles, Louisiana, to non-FTA countries. (11/30/16) 
Key LNG Export Information

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Applications, Docket Indexes, Authorizations and Legal Docket Files

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File Your Application Electronically

Aside from filing applications by hardcopy (courier, fax, mail, etc.), DOE offers an alternative option for filing applications. Companies seeking import and/or export authority from DOE can submit and electronic application. Please our e-filing webpage for more information regarding online submissions. Please note that currently, electronic process is available for short-term authorizations to import and/or export natural gas (including LNG) to and from Canada and Mexico and Importing LNG from Various International Sources. 

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Reporting Requirements

Importers and exporters of natural gas must file monthly reports on their activities.  Reports are required to contain certain information. For the convenience of filers, the Office of Regulation and International Engagement, Division of Natural Gas Regulation provides sample formats for reporting.