Wednesday's decision by the Energy Department to approve LNG exports at the Dominion Cove Point terminal in Maryland has a Barnett Shale angle. It's Tokyo Gas, which in March bought a 25 percent interest in Quicksilver Resources' Barnett assets. Tokyo Gas, through a subsidiary called TG Plus, has agreed to buy LNG from the Dominion terminal through Sumitomo, one of two companies that agreed to buy the output of the facility. (The other is India's GAIL Ltd.) Dominion is expected to have export capacity of 750 million cubic feet a day.
Tokyo Gas is Japan's largest natural gas utility and a diversified global energy company. Japan, like much of Asia, pays high prices for LNG and is scrambling to fill the gap left in its power grid by the shutdown of nuclear reactions in the wake of 2011's Fukushima disaster.
-- Jim Fuquay