Unfiltered: How to Show Up in Local Search Results

Posted by sherrybonelli

If you’re having trouble getting your local business’ website to show up in the Google local 3-pack or local search results in general, you’re not alone. The first page of Google’s search results seems to have gotten smaller over the years – the top and bottom of the page are often filled with ads, the local 7-pack was trimmed to a slim 3-pack, and online directories often take up the rest of page one. There is very little room for small local businesses to rank on the first page of Google.

To make matters worse, Google has a local “filter” that can strike a business, causing their listing to drop out of local search results for seemingly no reason – often, literally, overnight. Google’s local filter has been around for a while, but it became more noticeable after the Possum algorithm update, which began filtering out even more businesses from local search results.

If you think about it, this filter is not much different than websites ranking organically in search results: In an ideal world, the best sites win the top spots. However, the Google filter can have a significantly negative impact on local businesses that often rely on showing up in local search results to get customers to their doors.

What causes a business to get filtered?

Just like the multitude of factors that go into ranking high organically, there are a variety of factors that go into ranking in the local 3-pack and the Local Finder.

https://d2eeipcrcdle6.cloudfront.net/learn/seo/Algo-update-pages/Google-Possum1.png?mtime=20170612120640

Here are a few situations that might cause you to get filtered and what you can do if that happens.

Proximity matters

With mobile search becoming more and more popular, Google takes into consideration where the mobile searcher is physically located when they’re performing a search. This means that local search results can also depend on where the business is physically located when the search is being done.

A few years ago, if your business wasn’t located in the large city in your area, you were at a significant disadvantage. It was difficult to rank when someone searched for “business category + large city” – simply because your business wasn’t physically located in the “large city.” Things have changed slightly in your favor – which is great for all the businesses who have a physical address in the suburbs.

According to Ben Fisher, Co-Founder of SteadyDemand.com and a Google Top Contributor, “Proximity and Google My Business data play an important role in the Possum filter. Before the Hawk Update, this was exaggerated and now the radius has been greatly reduced.” This means there’s hope for you to show up in the local search results – even if your business isn’t located in a big city.

Google My Business categories

When you’re selecting a Google My Business category for your listing, select the most specific category that’s appropriate for your business.

However, if you see a competitor is outranking you, find out what category they are using and select the same category for your business (but only if it makes sense.) Then look at all the other things they are doing online to increase their organic ranking and emulate and outdo them.

If your category selections don’t work, it’s possible you’ve selected too many categories. Too many categories can confuse Google to the point where it’s not sure what your company’s specialty is. Try deleting some of the less-specific categories and see if that helps you show up.

Your physical address

If you can help it, don’t have the same physical address as your competitors. Yes, this means if you’re located in an office building (or worse, a “virtual office” or a UPS Store address) and competing companies are also in your building, your listing may not show up in local search results.

When it comes to sharing an address with a competitor, Ben Fisher recommends, “Ensure that you do not have the same primary category as your competitor if you are in the same building. Their listing may have more trust by Google and you would have a higher chance of being filtered.”

Also, many people think that simply adding a suite number to your address will differentiate your address enough from a competitor at the same location — it won’t. This is one of the biggest myths in local SEO. According to Fisher, “Google doesn’t factor in suite numbers.

Additionally, if competing businesses are located physically close to you, that, too, can impact whether you show up in local search results. So if you have a competitor a block or two down from your company, that can lead to one of you being filtered.

Practitioners

If you’re a doctor, attorney, accountant or are in some other industry with multiple professionals working in the same office location, Google may filter out some of your practitioners’ listings. Why? Google doesn’t want one business dominating the first page of Google local search results. This means that all of the practitioners in your company are essentially competing with one another.

To offset this, each practitioner’s Google My Business listing should have a different category (if possible) and should be directed to different URLs (either a page about the practitioner or a page about the specialty – they should not all point to the site’s home page).

For instance, at a medical practice, one doctor could select the family practice category and another the pediatrician category. Ideally you would want to change those doctors’ landing pages to reflect those categories, too:

Doctorsoffice.com/dr-mathew-family-practice
Doctorsoffice.com/dr-smith-pediatrician

Another thing you can do to differentiate the practitioners and help curtail being filtered is to have unique local phone numbers for each of them.

Evaluate what your competitors are doing right

If your listing is getting filtered out, look at the businesses that are being displayed and see what they’re doing right on Google Maps, Google+, Google My Business, on-site, off-site, and in any other areas you can think of. If possible, do an SEO site audit on their site to see what they’re doing right that perhaps you should do to overtake them in the rankings.

When you’re evaluating your competition, make sure you focus on the signals that help sites rank organically. Do they have a better Google+ description? Is their GMB listing completely filled out but yours is missing some information? Do they have more 5-star reviews? Do they have more backlinks? What is their business category? Start doing what they’re doing – only better.

In general Google wants to show the best businesses first. Compete toe-to-toe with the competitors that are ranking higher than you with the goal of eventually taking over their highly-coveted spot.

Other factors that can help you show up in local search results

As mentioned earlier, Google considers a variety of data points when it determines which local listings to display in search results and which ones to filter out. Here are a few other signals to pay attention to when optimizing for local search results:

Reviews

If everything else is equal, do you have more 5-star reviews than your competition? If so, you will probably show up in the local search results instead of your competitors. Google is one of the few review sites that encourages businesses to proactively ask customers to leave reviews. Take that as a clue to ask customers to give you great reviews not only on your Google My Business listing but also on third-party review sites like Facebook, Yelp, and others.

Posts

Are you interacting with your visitors by offering something special to those who see your business listing? Engaging with your potential customers by creating a Post lets Google know that you are paying attention and giving its users a special deal. Having more “transactions and interactions” with your potential customers is a good metric and can help you show up in local search results.

Google+

Despite what the critics say, Google+ is not dead. Whenever you make a Facebook or Twitter post, go ahead and post to Google+, too. Write semantic posts that are relevant to your business and relevant to your potential customers. Try to write Google+ posts that are approximately 300 words in length and be sure to keyword optimize the first 100 words of each post. You can often see some minor increases in rankings due to well-optimized Google+ posts, properly optimized Collections, and an engaged audience.

Here’s one important thing to keep in mind: Google+ is not the place to post content just to try and rank higher in local search. (That’s called spam and that is a no-no.) Ensure that any post you make to Google+ is valuable to your end-users.

Keep your Google My Business listing current

Adding photos, updating your business hours for holidays, utilizing the Q&A or booking features, etc. can help you show off in rankings. However, don’t add content just to try and rank higher. (Your Google My Business listing is not the place for spammy content.) Make sure the content you add to your GMB listing is both timely and high-quality content. By updating/adding content, Google knows that your information is likely accurate and that your business is engaged. Speaking of which…

Be engaged

Interacting with your customers online is not only beneficial for customer relations, but it can also be a signal to Google that can positively impact your local search ranking results. David Mihm, founder of Tidings, feels that by 2020, the difference-making local ranking factor will be engagement.

engagement-ranking-factor.jpg

(Source: The Difference-Making Local Ranking Factor of 2020)

According to Mihm, “Engagement is simply a much more accurate signal of the quality of local businesses than the traditional ranking factors of links, directory citations, and even reviews.” This means you need to start preparing now and begin interacting with potential customers by using GMB’s Q&A and booking features, instant messaging, Google+ posts, responding to Google and third-party reviews, ensure your website’s phone number is “click-to-call” enabled, etc.

Consolidate any duplicate listings

Some business owners go overboard and create multiple Google My Business listings with the thought that more has to be better. This is one instance where having more can actually hurt you. If you discover that for whatever reason your business has more than one GMB listing, it’s important that you properly consolidate your listings into one.

Other sources linking to your website

If verified data sources, like the Better Business Bureau, professional organizations and associations, chambers of commerce, online directories, etc. link to your website, that can have an impact on whether or not you show up on Google’s radar. Make sure that your business is listed on as many high-quality and authoritative online directories as possible – and ensure that the information about your business – especially your company’s Name, Address and Phone Number (NAP) — is consistent and accurate.

So there you have it! Hopefully you found some ideas on what to do if your listing is being filtered on Google local results.

What are some tips that you have for keeping your business “unfiltered”?

Sign up for The Moz Top 10, a semimonthly mailer updating you on the top ten hottest pieces of SEO news, tips, and rad links uncovered by the Moz team. Think of it as your exclusive digest of stuff you don’t have time to hunt down but want to read!

from Raymond Castleberry Blog http://raymondcastleberry.blogspot.com/2017/10/unfiltered-how-to-show-up-in-local.html
via http://raymondcastleberry.blogspot.com

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U.S. to Become a Major LNG Exporter

There is currently only one operational liquefied natural gas (LNG) export terminal in the United States; it has been operating since early 2016. Cheniere Energy is exporting LNG at its Sabine Pass facility with three trains and a capacity of about 2 billion cubic feet per day. Its total capacity is expected to be 3.5 billion cubic feet per day when all 5 trains are completed. Cheniere is in the process of getting contracts and financing for a sixth train.

There are five additional LNG projects under construction with a total capacity of about 7.5 billion cubic feet per day that will come online in 2018 and 2019, making total U.S. LNG export capacity about 10 or 11 billion cubic feet per day within just a few years. Four more projects with a capacity of almost 7 billion cubic feet per day are approved but not yet under construction. These terminals will make the United States one of the top three LNG exporters in the world; the other two major exporters are Australia and Qatar.[i] Australia is expected to overtake Qatar as the world’s largest LNG exporter by 2020.[ii]

Between 2016 and 2020, the United States is expected to account for about half of the 20 billion cubic feet per day of new LNG export capacity worldwide. (Worldwide LNG demand is now around 37 billion cubic feet per day.) The Energy Information Administration expects that U.S. LNG exports will exceed 3 billion cubic feet per day in 2018 and over 12 billion cubic feet per day by 2035. (See graph below.) LNG exports are expected to support up to 452,000 new jobs and add $73 billion to the U.S. economy by 2040.[iii]

Source: EIA, https://www.eia.gov/outlooks/aeo/pdf/0383(2017).pdf

Below is a description and status of the LNG export facilities under construction and the date when they are expected to come online.

Sabine Pass, Louisiana

Currently, Sabine Pass is the only active LNG export terminal in the United States. It has three operational trains, and a fourth train expected to be operational this month. Also, a fifth train is expected to be completed in August 2019. The construction of a sixth and final train is subject to the availability of commercial contracts and financing. Each train has a capacity of 0.7 billion cubic feet per day.

Cove Point, Maryland

The Cove Point terminal is expected to be operational by the end of this year. It was constructed by Dominion Energy as an import terminal but is being retooled as an export terminal. Its capacity will be 0.82 billion cubic feet per day.

Cameron LNG, Louisiana

Cameron LNG owned by Sempra Energy is scheduled to begin operation in 2018. It has three trains currently under construction. The first train is expected to begin operation in early 2018, and the second and third trains are expected to start up during the second half of 2018. The three trains will have a capacity of 2.1 billion cubic feet per day.

Sempra Energy is also in the permitting stage of constructing an expansion to the facility, which would add a fourth and fifth train. Project completion for the expansion is expected sometime in 2019.

Elba Island, Georgia

Elba Island is a relatively small-scale facility owned by Kinder Morgan with a capacity of 0.35 billion cubic feet per day. It was originally constructed as a regasification plant for imports of LNG and it is being retooled as an export facility. The project will use ten small scale liquefaction units, constructed in two phases. The first phase will begin service in mid-2018, while the second will come online in early 2019.

Freeport LNG, Texas

Freeport LNG is a larger facility with three trains currently under construction, which will begin operation between the end of 2018 and the third quarter of 2019, with a combined capacity of 2.14 billion cubic feet per day. A fourth train is under development.

Corpus Christi, Texas

Corpus Christi is the sixth facility currently under construction on 1,000 acres owned or controlled by Cheniere Energy. It is being designed for five trains and is located on the La Quinta Channel on the northeast side of Corpus Christi Bay, about 15 nautical miles from the coast.[iv] Construction on the first and second trains began in May 2015. The first train is expected to begin operating in the first half of 2019. About 5,000 construction workers are working on the first three trains which will have a combined capacity of 2.14 billion cubic feet per day. The facility is currently 70 percent complete.[v]

Global LNG Demand

As countries look to diversify their fuels, natural gas is becoming a fuel of choice mostly for industrial and electric power uses. It is expected that LNG trade, which increased by 22 percent in the last three years, will increase another 21 percent by 2020. There are currently 170 LNG tankers supplying foreign ports—20 more than a year ago. And, making it easier to supply Asia, the Panama Canal was widened to handle larger LNG vessels.[vi]

There are now floating LNG facilities that cost less than on-shore facilities to construct, are built more quickly and can be moved to where they are needed most. Currently, there are 25 floating facilities worldwide—the first of which came online in 2005.

In 2005, only 15 countries imported LNG. That number has more than tripled in twelve years.[vii] But, the bulk of the demand growth is expected to come from Asia. Asian LNG prices are their lowest in more than a decade. Favorable prices along with low U.S. transport costs to Asia have increased Asia’s demand for LNG and for U.S. LNG exports. U.S. exports of LNG to Asia increased 12 times during the first seven months of 2017. [viii]

Source: https://asia.nikkei.com/Politics-Economy/Economy/Rising-US-energy-exports-could-prompt-seismic-shift-in-Asian-market

China is planning to increase its share of natural gas in its energy mix from a targeted 10 percent by 2020 to 15 percent by 2030.[ix] While China’s natural gas consumption and production have both increased over the past decade, a supply gap has widened substantially since 2009. In the first half of 2017, China’s natural gas consumption increased 15 percent over the prior year reaching 115 billion cubic meters. To supply the gap, China gets natural gas both via pipeline imports and LNG. Its demand for LNG increased more than 40 percent over the past year.[x]

In the first seven months of 2017, the United States exported $139 million of LNG to China, surpassing its 2016 exports by two percent ($137 million).[xi] As part of the US-China 100-Day Action Plan, the United States and China agreed to allow Chinese buyers to secure long-term contracts and purchase LNG supplies from the United States directly rather than through third parties.[xii]

But China is not the only Asian country to want to increase its LNG usage. East Asia’s demand for LNG is expected to double by 2030 and some $80 billion in infrastructure is needed to meet that demand.[xiii] Japan has been making significant investments in LNG terminal infrastructure since LNG is helping to replace the country’s nuclear power. Recently, Japan has announced that it will invest $10 billion in a public-private initiative to support the expansion of Asia’s LNG markets.[xiv]

Conclusion

The United States is poised to become one of the top 3 LNG exporters along with Australia and Qatar. LNG export facilities are under construction and in the next few years the United States will have 10 or 11 billion cubic feet per day of LNG capacity. Countries are looking toward U.S. LNG as a secure supply of natural gas as they plan to use more of the fuel to decrease emissions and diversify their fuel mix.


[i] Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, North American LNG Import/Export Terminals Approved, May 1, 2017, https://www.ferc.gov/industries/gas/indus-act/lng/lng-approved.pdf

[ii] Hydrocarbon Report, An LNG Horse Race, August 25, 2017, http://hydrocarbonreports.com/archives/866608/866608

[iii] Gas to Power Journal, LNG exports could add up to $73bn to U.S. economy by 2040, October 5, 2017, https://gastopowerjournal.com/markets/item/7783-lng-exports-could-add-up-to-73-billion-to-u-s-economy-by-2040

[iv] Corpus Christi LNG, http://www.cheniere.com/terminals/corpus-christi-project/

[v] Corpus Christi, Cheniere LNG plant 70 percent complete, October 24, 2017, https://www.101corpuschristi.com/news/cheniere-lng-plant-70-percent-complete

[vi] New American, U.S. Natural Gas Exports to Add 500,000 Jobs, $73 Billion to Economy, October 16, 2017, https://www.thenewamerican.com/tech/energy/item/27141-us-natural-gas-exports-to-add-500-000-jobs-73-billion-to-economy

[vii] New York Times, Boom in American Liquefied Natural Gas Is Shaking Up the Energy World, October 16, 2017, https://www.nytimes.com/2017/10/16/business/energy-environment/liquified-natural-gas-world-markets.html?_r=0

[viii] NIKKEI Asian Review, Rising US energy exports could prompt seismic shift in Asian market, October 27, 2017, https://asia.nikkei.com/Politics-Economy/Economy/Rising-US-energy-exports-could-prompt-seismic-shift-in-Asian-market?page=1

[ix]JWN Energy, US LNG exports to China to surge, October 12, 2017, http://www.jwnenergy.com/article/2017/10/us-lng-exports-china-surge/

[x] Gulf Times, U.S. gas traders want to know about LNG exports, October 1, 2017, http://www.gulf-times.com/story/565728/Forget-weather-US-gas-traders-want-to-know-about-L

[xi] Global Trade, US Coal and LNG Exports to China Surge, October 11, 2017, http://www.globaltrademag.com/global-trade-daily/us-coal-lng-exports-china-surge

[xii] Global Trade, Initial Results of the US-China 100-Day Economic Action Plan Released, May 12, 2017, http://www.globaltrademag.com/global-logistics/initial-results-us-china-100-day-economic-action-plan-released

[xiii] Asian Review, East Asia needs $80bn in infrastructure to meet LNG demand, September 28, 2017, https://asia.nikkei.com/Politics-Economy/Economy/East-Asia-needs-80bn-in-infrastructure-to-meet-LNG-demand

[xiv] Platts, Japan offers $10 billion to support Asian LNG growth, October 18, 2017, https://www.platts.com/latest-news/natural-gas/singapore/japan-offers-10-billion-to-support-asian-lng-26823387

The post U.S. to Become a Major LNG Exporter appeared first on IER.

from Raymond Castleberry Blog http://raymondcastleberry.blogspot.com/2017/10/us-to-become-major-lng-exporter.html
via http://raymondcastleberry.blogspot.com

U.S. to Become a Major LNG Exporter

There is currently only one operational liquefied natural gas (LNG) export terminal in the United States; it has been operating since early 2016. Cheniere Energy is exporting LNG at its Sabine Pass facility with three trains and a capacity of about 2 billion cubic feet per day. Its total capacity is expected to be 3.5 billion cubic feet per day when all 5 trains are completed. Cheniere is in the process of getting contracts and financing for a sixth train.

There are five additional LNG projects under construction with a total capacity of about 7.5 billion cubic feet per day that will come online in 2018 and 2019, making total U.S. LNG export capacity about 10 or 11 billion cubic feet per day within just a few years. Four more projects with a capacity of almost 7 billion cubic feet per day are approved but not yet under construction. These terminals will make the United States one of the top three LNG exporters in the world; the other two major exporters are Australia and Qatar.[i] Australia is expected to overtake Qatar as the world’s largest LNG exporter by 2020.[ii]

Between 2016 and 2020, the United States is expected to account for about half of the 20 billion cubic feet per day of new LNG export capacity worldwide. (Worldwide LNG demand is now around 37 billion cubic feet per day.) The Energy Information Administration expects that U.S. LNG exports will exceed 3 billion cubic feet per day in 2018 and over 12 billion cubic feet per day by 2035. (See graph below.) LNG exports are expected to support up to 452,000 new jobs and add $73 billion to the U.S. economy by 2040.[iii]

Source: EIA, https://www.eia.gov/outlooks/aeo/pdf/0383(2017).pdf

Below is a description and status of the LNG export facilities under construction and the date when they are expected to come online.

Sabine Pass, Louisiana

Currently, Sabine Pass is the only active LNG export terminal in the United States. It has three operational trains, and a fourth train expected to be operational this month. Also, a fifth train is expected to be completed in August 2019. The construction of a sixth and final train is subject to the availability of commercial contracts and financing. Each train has a capacity of 0.7 billion cubic feet per day.

Cove Point, Maryland

The Cove Point terminal is expected to be operational by the end of this year. It was constructed by Dominion Energy as an import terminal but is being retooled as an export terminal. Its capacity will be 0.82 billion cubic feet per day.

Cameron LNG, Louisiana

Cameron LNG owned by Sempra Energy is scheduled to begin operation in 2018. It has three trains currently under construction. The first train is expected to begin operation in early 2018, and the second and third trains are expected to start up during the second half of 2018. The three trains will have a capacity of 2.1 billion cubic feet per day.

Sempra Energy is also in the permitting stage of constructing an expansion to the facility, which would add a fourth and fifth train. Project completion for the expansion is expected sometime in 2019.

Elba Island, Georgia

Elba Island is a relatively small-scale facility owned by Kinder Morgan with a capacity of 0.35 billion cubic feet per day. It was originally constructed as a regasification plant for imports of LNG and it is being retooled as an export facility. The project will use ten small scale liquefaction units, constructed in two phases. The first phase will begin service in mid-2018, while the second will come online in early 2019.

Freeport LNG, Texas

Freeport LNG is a larger facility with three trains currently under construction, which will begin operation between the end of 2018 and the third quarter of 2019, with a combined capacity of 2.14 billion cubic feet per day. A fourth train is under development.

Corpus Christi, Texas

Corpus Christi is the sixth facility currently under construction on 1,000 acres owned or controlled by Cheniere Energy. It is being designed for five trains and is located on the La Quinta Channel on the northeast side of Corpus Christi Bay, about 15 nautical miles from the coast.[iv] Construction on the first and second trains began in May 2015. The first train is expected to begin operating in the first half of 2019. About 5,000 construction workers are working on the first three trains which will have a combined capacity of 2.14 billion cubic feet per day. The facility is currently 70 percent complete.[v]

Global LNG Demand

As countries look to diversify their fuels, natural gas is becoming a fuel of choice mostly for industrial and electric power uses. It is expected that LNG trade, which increased by 22 percent in the last three years, will increase another 21 percent by 2020. There are currently 170 LNG tankers supplying foreign ports—20 more than a year ago. And, making it easier to supply Asia, the Panama Canal was widened to handle larger LNG vessels.[vi]

There are now floating LNG facilities that cost less than on-shore facilities to construct, are built more quickly and can be moved to where they are needed most. Currently, there are 25 floating facilities worldwide—the first of which came online in 2005.

In 2005, only 15 countries imported LNG. That number has more than tripled in twelve years.[vii] But, the bulk of the demand growth is expected to come from Asia. Asian LNG prices are their lowest in more than a decade. Favorable prices along with low U.S. transport costs to Asia have increased Asia’s demand for LNG and for U.S. LNG exports. U.S. exports of LNG to Asia increased 12 times during the first seven months of 2017. [viii]

Source: https://asia.nikkei.com/Politics-Economy/Economy/Rising-US-energy-exports-could-prompt-seismic-shift-in-Asian-market

China is planning to increase its share of natural gas in its energy mix from a targeted 10 percent by 2020 to 15 percent by 2030.[ix] While China’s natural gas consumption and production have both increased over the past decade, a supply gap has widened substantially since 2009. In the first half of 2017, China’s natural gas consumption increased 15 percent over the prior year reaching 115 billion cubic meters. To supply the gap, China gets natural gas both via pipeline imports and LNG. Its demand for LNG increased more than 40 percent over the past year.[x]

In the first seven months of 2017, the United States exported $139 million of LNG to China, surpassing its 2016 exports by two percent ($137 million).[xi] As part of the US-China 100-Day Action Plan, the United States and China agreed to allow Chinese buyers to secure long-term contracts and purchase LNG supplies from the United States directly rather than through third parties.[xii]

But China is not the only Asian country to want to increase its LNG usage. East Asia’s demand for LNG is expected to double by 2030 and some $80 billion in infrastructure is needed to meet that demand.[xiii] Japan has been making significant investments in LNG terminal infrastructure since LNG is helping to replace the country’s nuclear power. Recently, Japan has announced that it will invest $10 billion in a public-private initiative to support the expansion of Asia’s LNG markets.[xiv]

Conclusion

The United States is poised to become one of the top 3 LNG exporters along with Australia and Qatar. LNG export facilities are under construction and in the next few years the United States will have 10 or 11 billion cubic feet per day of LNG capacity. Countries are looking toward U.S. LNG as a secure supply of natural gas as they plan to use more of the fuel to decrease emissions and diversify their fuel mix.


[i] Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, North American LNG Import/Export Terminals Approved, May 1, 2017, https://www.ferc.gov/industries/gas/indus-act/lng/lng-approved.pdf

[ii] Hydrocarbon Report, An LNG Horse Race, August 25, 2017, http://hydrocarbonreports.com/archives/866608/866608

[iii] Gas to Power Journal, LNG exports could add up to $73bn to U.S. economy by 2040, October 5, 2017, https://gastopowerjournal.com/markets/item/7783-lng-exports-could-add-up-to-73-billion-to-u-s-economy-by-2040

[iv] Corpus Christi LNG, http://www.cheniere.com/terminals/corpus-christi-project/

[v] Corpus Christi, Cheniere LNG plant 70 percent complete, October 24, 2017, https://www.101corpuschristi.com/news/cheniere-lng-plant-70-percent-complete

[vi] New American, U.S. Natural Gas Exports to Add 500,000 Jobs, $73 Billion to Economy, October 16, 2017, https://www.thenewamerican.com/tech/energy/item/27141-us-natural-gas-exports-to-add-500-000-jobs-73-billion-to-economy

[vii] New York Times, Boom in American Liquefied Natural Gas Is Shaking Up the Energy World, October 16, 2017, https://www.nytimes.com/2017/10/16/business/energy-environment/liquified-natural-gas-world-markets.html?_r=0

[viii] NIKKEI Asian Review, Rising US energy exports could prompt seismic shift in Asian market, October 27, 2017, https://asia.nikkei.com/Politics-Economy/Economy/Rising-US-energy-exports-could-prompt-seismic-shift-in-Asian-market?page=1

[ix]JWN Energy, US LNG exports to China to surge, October 12, 2017, http://www.jwnenergy.com/article/2017/10/us-lng-exports-china-surge/

[x] Gulf Times, U.S. gas traders want to know about LNG exports, October 1, 2017, http://www.gulf-times.com/story/565728/Forget-weather-US-gas-traders-want-to-know-about-L

[xi] Global Trade, US Coal and LNG Exports to China Surge, October 11, 2017, http://www.globaltrademag.com/global-trade-daily/us-coal-lng-exports-china-surge

[xii] Global Trade, Initial Results of the US-China 100-Day Economic Action Plan Released, May 12, 2017, http://www.globaltrademag.com/global-logistics/initial-results-us-china-100-day-economic-action-plan-released

[xiii] Asian Review, East Asia needs $80bn in infrastructure to meet LNG demand, September 28, 2017, https://asia.nikkei.com/Politics-Economy/Economy/East-Asia-needs-80bn-in-infrastructure-to-meet-LNG-demand

[xiv] Platts, Japan offers $10 billion to support Asian LNG growth, October 18, 2017, https://www.platts.com/latest-news/natural-gas/singapore/japan-offers-10-billion-to-support-asian-lng-26823387

The post U.S. to Become a Major LNG Exporter appeared first on IER.

U.S. to Become a Major LNG Exporter

There is currently only one operational liquefied natural gas (LNG) export terminal in the United States; it has been operating since early 2016. Cheniere Energy is exporting LNG at its Sabine Pass facility with three trains and a capacity of about 2 billion cubic feet per day. Its total capacity is expected to be 3.5 billion cubic feet per day when all 5 trains are completed. Cheniere is in the process of getting contracts and financing for a sixth train.

There are five additional LNG projects under construction with a total capacity of about 7.5 billion cubic feet per day that will come online in 2018 and 2019, making total U.S. LNG export capacity about 10 or 11 billion cubic feet per day within just a few years. Four more projects with a capacity of almost 7 billion cubic feet per day are approved but not yet under construction. These terminals will make the United States one of the top three LNG exporters in the world; the other two major exporters are Australia and Qatar.[i] Australia is expected to overtake Qatar as the world’s largest LNG exporter by 2020.[ii]

Between 2016 and 2020, the United States is expected to account for about half of the 20 billion cubic feet per day of new LNG export capacity worldwide. (Worldwide LNG demand is now around 37 billion cubic feet per day.) The Energy Information Administration expects that U.S. LNG exports will exceed 3 billion cubic feet per day in 2018 and over 12 billion cubic feet per day by 2035. (See graph below.) LNG exports are expected to support up to 452,000 new jobs and add $73 billion to the U.S. economy by 2040.[iii]

Source: EIA, https://www.eia.gov/outlooks/aeo/pdf/0383(2017).pdf

Below is a description and status of the LNG export facilities under construction and the date when they are expected to come online.

Sabine Pass, Louisiana

Currently, Sabine Pass is the only active LNG export terminal in the United States. It has three operational trains, and a fourth train expected to be operational this month. Also, a fifth train is expected to be completed in August 2019. The construction of a sixth and final train is subject to the availability of commercial contracts and financing. Each train has a capacity of 0.7 billion cubic feet per day.

Cove Point, Maryland

The Cove Point terminal is expected to be operational by the end of this year. It was constructed by Dominion Energy as an import terminal but is being retooled as an export terminal. Its capacity will be 0.82 billion cubic feet per day.

Cameron LNG, Louisiana

Cameron LNG owned by Sempra Energy is scheduled to begin operation in 2018. It has three trains currently under construction. The first train is expected to begin operation in early 2018, and the second and third trains are expected to start up during the second half of 2018. The three trains will have a capacity of 2.1 billion cubic feet per day.

Sempra Energy is also in the permitting stage of constructing an expansion to the facility, which would add a fourth and fifth train. Project completion for the expansion is expected sometime in 2019.

Elba Island, Georgia

Elba Island is a relatively small-scale facility owned by Kinder Morgan with a capacity of 0.35 billion cubic feet per day. It was originally constructed as a regasification plant for imports of LNG and it is being retooled as an export facility. The project will use ten small scale liquefaction units, constructed in two phases. The first phase will begin service in mid-2018, while the second will come online in early 2019.

Freeport LNG, Texas

Freeport LNG is a larger facility with three trains currently under construction, which will begin operation between the end of 2018 and the third quarter of 2019, with a combined capacity of 2.14 billion cubic feet per day. A fourth train is under development.

Corpus Christi, Texas

Corpus Christi is the sixth facility currently under construction on 1,000 acres owned or controlled by Cheniere Energy. It is being designed for five trains and is located on the La Quinta Channel on the northeast side of Corpus Christi Bay, about 15 nautical miles from the coast.[iv] Construction on the first and second trains began in May 2015. The first train is expected to begin operating in the first half of 2019. About 5,000 construction workers are working on the first three trains which will have a combined capacity of 2.14 billion cubic feet per day. The facility is currently 70 percent complete.[v]

Global LNG Demand

As countries look to diversify their fuels, natural gas is becoming a fuel of choice mostly for industrial and electric power uses. It is expected that LNG trade, which increased by 22 percent in the last three years, will increase another 21 percent by 2020. There are currently 170 LNG tankers supplying foreign ports—20 more than a year ago. And, making it easier to supply Asia, the Panama Canal was widened to handle larger LNG vessels.[vi]

There are now floating LNG facilities that cost less than on-shore facilities to construct, are built more quickly and can be moved to where they are needed most. Currently, there are 25 floating facilities worldwide—the first of which came online in 2005.

In 2005, only 15 countries imported LNG. That number has more than tripled in twelve years.[vii] But, the bulk of the demand growth is expected to come from Asia. Asian LNG prices are their lowest in more than a decade. Favorable prices along with low U.S. transport costs to Asia have increased Asia’s demand for LNG and for U.S. LNG exports. U.S. exports of LNG to Asia increased 12 times during the first seven months of 2017. [viii]

Source: https://asia.nikkei.com/Politics-Economy/Economy/Rising-US-energy-exports-could-prompt-seismic-shift-in-Asian-market

China is planning to increase its share of natural gas in its energy mix from a targeted 10 percent by 2020 to 15 percent by 2030.[ix] While China’s natural gas consumption and production have both increased over the past decade, a supply gap has widened substantially since 2009. In the first half of 2017, China’s natural gas consumption increased 15 percent over the prior year reaching 115 billion cubic meters. To supply the gap, China gets natural gas both via pipeline imports and LNG. Its demand for LNG increased more than 40 percent over the past year.[x]

In the first seven months of 2017, the United States exported $139 million of LNG to China, surpassing its 2016 exports by two percent ($137 million).[xi] As part of the US-China 100-Day Action Plan, the United States and China agreed to allow Chinese buyers to secure long-term contracts and purchase LNG supplies from the United States directly rather than through third parties.[xii]

But China is not the only Asian country to want to increase its LNG usage. East Asia’s demand for LNG is expected to double by 2030 and some $80 billion in infrastructure is needed to meet that demand.[xiii] Japan has been making significant investments in LNG terminal infrastructure since LNG is helping to replace the country’s nuclear power. Recently, Japan has announced that it will invest $10 billion in a public-private initiative to support the expansion of Asia’s LNG markets.[xiv]

Conclusion

The United States is poised to become one of the top 3 LNG exporters along with Australia and Qatar. LNG export facilities are under construction and in the next few years the United States will have 10 or 11 billion cubic feet per day of LNG capacity. Countries are looking toward U.S. LNG as a secure supply of natural gas as they plan to use more of the fuel to decrease emissions and diversify their fuel mix.


[i] Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, North American LNG Import/Export Terminals Approved, May 1, 2017, https://www.ferc.gov/industries/gas/indus-act/lng/lng-approved.pdf

[ii] Hydrocarbon Report, An LNG Horse Race, August 25, 2017, http://hydrocarbonreports.com/archives/866608/866608

[iii] Gas to Power Journal, LNG exports could add up to $73bn to U.S. economy by 2040, October 5, 2017, https://gastopowerjournal.com/markets/item/7783-lng-exports-could-add-up-to-73-billion-to-u-s-economy-by-2040

[iv] Corpus Christi LNG, http://www.cheniere.com/terminals/corpus-christi-project/

[v] Corpus Christi, Cheniere LNG plant 70 percent complete, October 24, 2017, https://www.101corpuschristi.com/news/cheniere-lng-plant-70-percent-complete

[vi] New American, U.S. Natural Gas Exports to Add 500,000 Jobs, $73 Billion to Economy, October 16, 2017, https://www.thenewamerican.com/tech/energy/item/27141-us-natural-gas-exports-to-add-500-000-jobs-73-billion-to-economy

[vii] New York Times, Boom in American Liquefied Natural Gas Is Shaking Up the Energy World, October 16, 2017, https://www.nytimes.com/2017/10/16/business/energy-environment/liquified-natural-gas-world-markets.html?_r=0

[viii] NIKKEI Asian Review, Rising US energy exports could prompt seismic shift in Asian market, October 27, 2017, https://asia.nikkei.com/Politics-Economy/Economy/Rising-US-energy-exports-could-prompt-seismic-shift-in-Asian-market?page=1

[ix]JWN Energy, US LNG exports to China to surge, October 12, 2017, http://www.jwnenergy.com/article/2017/10/us-lng-exports-china-surge/

[x] Gulf Times, U.S. gas traders want to know about LNG exports, October 1, 2017, http://www.gulf-times.com/story/565728/Forget-weather-US-gas-traders-want-to-know-about-L

[xi] Global Trade, US Coal and LNG Exports to China Surge, October 11, 2017, http://www.globaltrademag.com/global-trade-daily/us-coal-lng-exports-china-surge

[xii] Global Trade, Initial Results of the US-China 100-Day Economic Action Plan Released, May 12, 2017, http://www.globaltrademag.com/global-logistics/initial-results-us-china-100-day-economic-action-plan-released

[xiii] Asian Review, East Asia needs $80bn in infrastructure to meet LNG demand, September 28, 2017, https://asia.nikkei.com/Politics-Economy/Economy/East-Asia-needs-80bn-in-infrastructure-to-meet-LNG-demand

[xiv] Platts, Japan offers $10 billion to support Asian LNG growth, October 18, 2017, https://www.platts.com/latest-news/natural-gas/singapore/japan-offers-10-billion-to-support-asian-lng-26823387

The post U.S. to Become a Major LNG Exporter appeared first on IER.

NABCEP now available worldwide!

Attention international alumni! SEI is excited to announce that NABCEP certification just got more accessible. On October 17, The North American Board of Certified Energy Practitioners announced that for the first time NABCEP’s Photovoltaic (PV) Associate exam will be administered outside of North America. According to a press release on NABCEP’s website, the international exam will be the same one that is offered in North America, in a computerized format, and in English only.

NABCEP’s executive director, Shawn O’Brien, also released the following statement in the press release: “Candidates for NABCEP’s PV Associate exam live all over the globe, but until now they had to travel to either the U.S. or Canada to take the exam,” he said. “International administrations of NABCEP’s PV Associate exam will be offered at any of the international test sites of our testing vendor, Castle Worldwide, Inc.”

According to NABCEP, the PV Associate exam will be available in over 370 cities in 97 countries across the globe, including China, India, Australia, Germany, and Kenya. There will be an additional $75 fee for international students, which is a standard of Castle Worldwide, Inc. exams.

As an international solar energy training organization with student alumni in 145 countries, Solar Energy International (SEI) is excited to share this news with our worldwide network. The following is a statement from SEI’s Kristopher Sutton, Director of Business Development – Middle East and Africa.

“The ability to offer NABCEP’s PVA exam internationally is a huge development for SEI,” Kris said.  “Our Middle East program is rapidly growing in tandem with the markets in the region. Utilities and governments in the MENA region are working to develop standards that ensure safe, quality PV installations and for many years our students have been hearing about NABCEP and asking about access to their exams. Now, by offering the exam internationally we have an option to better serve our students and support the development of strong solar market around the world.”

Are you interested in NABCEP certification or sitting for the NABCEP exam? Solar energy training at SEI is a great place to start! Get started in the solar industry today with our free course RE100: Introduction to Renewable Energy or our course on the basics of solar PV training, PVOL101: Solar Training-Solar Electric Design and Installation.

The post NABCEP now available worldwide! appeared first on Solar Training – Solar Installer Training – Solar PV Installation Training – Solar Energy Courses – Renewable Energy Education – NABCEP – Solar Energy International (SEI).

NABCEP now available worldwide!

Attention international alumni! SEI is excited to announce that NABCEP certification just got more accessible. On October 17, The North American Board of Certified Energy Practitioners announced that for the first time NABCEP’s Photovoltaic (PV) Associate exam will be administered outside of North America. According to a press release on NABCEP’s website, the international exam will be the same one that is offered in North America, in a computerized format, and in English only.

NABCEP’s executive director, Shawn O’Brien, also released the following statement in the press release: “Candidates for NABCEP’s PV Associate exam live all over the globe, but until now they had to travel to either the U.S. or Canada to take the exam,” he said. “International administrations of NABCEP’s PV Associate exam will be offered at any of the international test sites of our testing vendor, Castle Worldwide, Inc.”

According to NABCEP, the PV Associate exam will be available in over 370 cities in 97 countries across the globe, including China, India, Australia, Germany, and Kenya. There will be an additional $75 fee for international students, which is a standard of Castle Worldwide, Inc. exams.

As an international solar energy training organization with student alumni in 145 countries, Solar Energy International (SEI) is excited to share this news with our worldwide network. The following is a statement from SEI’s Kristopher Sutton, Director of Business Development – Middle East and Africa.

“The ability to offer NABCEP’s PVA exam internationally is a huge development for SEI,” Kris said.  “Our Middle East program is rapidly growing in tandem with the markets in the region. Utilities and governments in the MENA region are working to develop standards that ensure safe, quality PV installations and for many years our students have been hearing about NABCEP and asking about access to their exams. Now, by offering the exam internationally we have an option to better serve our students and support the development of strong solar market around the world.”

Are you interested in NABCEP certification or sitting for the NABCEP exam? Solar energy training at SEI is a great place to start! Get started in the solar industry today with our free course RE100: Introduction to Renewable Energy or our course on the basics of solar PV training, PVOL101: Solar Training-Solar Electric Design and Installation.

The post NABCEP now available worldwide! appeared first on Solar Training – Solar Installer Training – Solar PV Installation Training – Solar Energy Courses – Renewable Energy Education – NABCEP – Solar Energy International (SEI).

NABCEP now available worldwide!

Attention international alumni! SEI is excited to announce that NABCEP certification just got more accessible. On October 17, The North American Board of Certified Energy Practitioners announced that for the first time NABCEP’s Photovoltaic (PV) Associate exam will be administered outside of North America. According to a press release on NABCEP’s website, the international exam will be the same one that is offered in North America, in a computerized format, and in English only.

NABCEP’s executive director, Shawn O’Brien, also released the following statement in the press release: “Candidates for NABCEP’s PV Associate exam live all over the globe, but until now they had to travel to either the U.S. or Canada to take the exam,” he said. “International administrations of NABCEP’s PV Associate exam will be offered at any of the international test sites of our testing vendor, Castle Worldwide, Inc.”

According to NABCEP, the PV Associate exam will be available in over 370 cities in 97 countries across the globe, including China, India, Australia, Germany, and Kenya. There will be an additional $75 fee for international students, which is a standard of Castle Worldwide, Inc. exams.

As an international solar energy training organization with student alumni in 145 countries, Solar Energy International (SEI) is excited to share this news with our worldwide network. The following is a statement from SEI’s Kristopher Sutton, Director of Business Development – Middle East and Africa.

“The ability to offer NABCEP’s PVA exam internationally is a huge development for SEI,” Kris said.  “Our Middle East program is rapidly growing in tandem with the markets in the region. Utilities and governments in the MENA region are working to develop standards that ensure safe, quality PV installations and for many years our students have been hearing about NABCEP and asking about access to their exams. Now, by offering the exam internationally we have an option to better serve our students and support the development of strong solar market around the world.”

Are you interested in NABCEP certification or sitting for the NABCEP exam? Solar energy training at SEI is a great place to start! Get started in the solar industry today with our free course RE100: Introduction to Renewable Energy or our course on the basics of solar PV training, PVOL101: Solar Training-Solar Electric Design and Installation.

The post NABCEP now available worldwide! appeared first on Solar Training – Solar Installer Training – Solar PV Installation Training – Solar Energy Courses – Renewable Energy Education – NABCEP – Solar Energy International (SEI).

from Raymond Castleberry Blog http://raymondcastleberry.blogspot.com/2017/10/nabcep-now-available-worldwide.html
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