Author: Roberta Rampton
The bills, which would face an uphill battle in the Republican-controlled House, come as U.S. regulators consider applications for exports of a glut of natural gas that has weighed down prices and caused some companies to step back from drilling.
One of the bills from Markey, an outspoken critic of the oil and gas industry, would prevent the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission from approving any natural gas export terminals until 2025.
The other bill would prevent exports of natural gas drilled on federal lands, and would ban pipelines crossing federal lands from carrying natural gas destined for export. It was cosponsored by Rush Holt, a Democratic congressman from New Jersey.
"Low natural gas prices are a competitive advantage for American businesses and a relief for American families, and exporting our natural gas would eliminate our economic edge and impose new costs on consumers,"
...Markey said in a statement.
Front-month March natural gas futures on the New York Mercantile Exchange were trading around $2.50 per million British thermal units on Tuesday, rising from a 10-year low of $2.231 hit in late January that forced some producers to announce drilling cuts.
Markey has also tried to block exports of oil that would be carried by TransCanada's Keystone XL pipeline, but has so far been rebuffed in the House.