Meyer, Dustin

Energy Dialogues Interviews Dustin Meyer, Director of Market Development at API

Energy Dialogues recently interviewed Dustin Meyer, Director of Market Development at API. In this insightful interview, Dustin discussed with us the role the American energy revolution has played in North American and global energy industry, the response of the natural gas markets to the coronavirus pandemic, the impact natural gas demand will have on the broader economy and more.

Dustin will be joining us as a panelist at this year’s Mexican Energy Forum on November 17-18 in Mexico City. Attendance to the forum is by invitation only, to be considered for an invitation, please contact us.

We invite you to read Dustin Meyer’s full interview below.

ED: In June, API published an updated industry standard for measuring and exporting LNG. What is new about this standard? And how will this support the development of the U.S. energy sector?

API’s Global Industry Services (GIS) department creates safety and environmental standards for all segments of natural gas and oil operations that are used around the world, and that have been incorporated by reference into federal regulations in the U.S over 700 times. In addition to standards, API’s GIS division is responsible for publishing certifications, trainings, events and safety programs for the energy industry worldwide. API standards are developed under the American National Standards Institute accredited process, and their technical rigor is essential to the sustainable development and regulation of natural gas and oil resources. This latest standard supports the responsible, sustainable growth of the U.S. LNG marketplace.

In June, API’s GIS department published a first-of-its-kind LNG measurement standard within its Manual of Petroleum Measurement Standards (MPMS), allowing LNG suppliers to safely and accurately sample and measure the fuel’s content. This guarantees the proper quality of LNG at the point of transfer and underscores the rigorous safety guidelines for conducting LNG sampling. America’s capacity to transport natural gas to market continues to grow, and industrywide standards support the development of efficient and far-reaching energy supply chains.

ED: What role has the American energy revolution played in the North American and global energy story?

Since 2014, the U.S. has led the world in natural gas and oil production, surpassing both Russia and Saudi Arabia. The coronavirus-related downturn notwithstanding, our domestic energy abundance provides stability for the North American marketplace, insulating the region from price shocks and stabilizing the global market against supply disruptions. As the world’s demand for petroleum products rises over the long-term, U.S. producers are well-positioned to support the expanding global market – to the benefit of North American economies.

The growth of U.S liquefied natural gas (LNG) exports has also shifted the energy narrative. Now that American LNG is more accessible across Europe and Asia, prices have declined and incentivized coal-to-natural gas switching in power generation, which has saved about 500 million tons of carbon dioxide globally since 2010. American natural gas production and LNG export growth demonstrate that economic and environmental progress can coexist, and the increasing availability of this cleaner-burning fuel is among our most significant contributions to the existing energy mix.

ED: How have natural gas markets responded to the coronavirus pandemic? As the U.S. energy sector recovers, how will natural gas demand impact the broader economy and the environment?

The emergence of the U.S. as a major energy producer means the natural gas market has never been more flexible, more reliable or more adaptable to changing conditions – including a global pandemic. The spread of the coronavirus is expected to impact natural gas demand through 2021, but longer-term outlooks project robust demand growth once economic recovery takes hold. As the world begins to safely return to normal, U.S. natural gas is positioned to drive both economic recovery and environmental progress.

Last year, U.S. electricity generation from natural gas increased nearly eight percent, reaching a record high of 37 percent of overall electricity generation. This trend has been developing for years, as consistently low natural gas prices have shifted power generation from coal to natural gas. This is good news for both consumers’ personal utility bills and nationwide emissions reductions, and as the U.S. expands LNG export capacity, price competitive natural gas is an increasingly valuable resource for refueling the world’s economy while reducing global emissions.

ED: Has the coronavirus pandemic, and the associated market downturn, impacted the trend toward natural gas-fired power generation?  

The shift towards greater reliance on natural gas – along with a corresponding decline in coal-fired generation – has been a key feature of the U.S. power sector for most of the past decade, and the current environment appears to be accelerating this trend. In fact, the natural gas transition is starker during this historic season as lower electricity demand, coupled with low natural gas prices, has provided added incentive for power suppliers.

The electricity sector’s response to the current coronavirus-induced demand decline has favored the increased deployment of low-cost natural gas for power generation. Natural gas has been cost effective and resilient in 2020 so far, and the environmental benefits of coal-to-natural gas switching – the leading reason carbon dioxide levels are currently at their lowest levels in a generation – give the fuel added staying power. By growing its relative market share in an era of uncertain demand, natural gas demonstrates its long-term importance to the U.S. power mix.

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