DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY: NEW REPORT ON EXPORTATION
By Deborah Rogers
The US Department of Energy (DOE) released a report on 5 December, 2012 which examined the question of economic benefit to the US of natural gas exportation. Last December, Deloitte issued an independent report regarding exportation which had hauntingly similar conclusions. Interestingly enough, many of the conclusions in the Deloitte report are now known to be erroneous only one year later.
The NERA report claims favorable consequences for the US economy should natural gas be exported. But a closer look at both reports, its authors and the underlying economic assumptions is warranted due to inherent biases.
The DOE’s economic analysis released yesterday was conducted by a firm called NERA Economics. It must be noted that the principals of NERA including Dr. David Montgomery the lead author of the study, list as their credentials extensive work on behalf of the oil and gas industry including such particularly lucrative work as expert witnesses on behalf of petroleum companies. Such work is often times the bread and butter of these organizations. This constitutes the first red flag.