US natgas output and demand to hit record highs again in 2024 -EIA


Adds LNG, coal and carbon data

Jan 9 (Reuters) - U.S. natural gas production and demand, as well as liquefied natural gas (LNG) exports, will hit record highs again in 2024, the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) said in its Short Term Energy Outlook (STEO) on Tuesday.

The EIA projected dry gas production will rise to 105.04 billion cubic feet per day (bcfd) in 2024 and 106.38 bcfd in 2025 from a record 103.55 bcfd in 2023.

The agency also projected domestic gas consumption would rise from a record 88.90 bcfd in 2023 to 89.89 bcfd in 2024 before easing to 89.66 bcfd in 2025.

If the projections are correct, 2024 would be the first time output rises for four years in a row since 2015, and demand increases for four years in a row since 2016.

The latest projections for 2024 were higher than EIA's December forecast of 104.91 bcfd for supply and 89.62 bcfd for demand.

The shale revolution has boosted the U.S. to the top gas producer spot since 2011, allowing it to become the world's leading LNG exporter in 2023 ahead of former LNG leaders Australia and Qatar.

The agency forecast average U.S. LNG exports would reach 12.36 bcfd in 2024 and 14.43 bcfd in 2025, up from a record 11.84 bcfd in 2023.

The EIA's 2024 LNG export forecast was unchanged from its outlook in December.

The agency projected U.S. coal production would fall from 581.7 million short tons in 2023 to 489.3 million short tons in 2024, the lowest since 1963, and 428.8 million short tons in 2025, the lowest since 1961, as gas and renewable sources of power displace coal-fired plants.

As power producers burn less coal, the EIA projected carbon dioxide emissions from fossil fuels would fall from 4.778 billion metric tons in 2023 to 4.775 billion metric tons in 2024 and 4.698 billion metric tons in 2025.

That compares with 4.580 billion metric tons in 2020, which was the lowest since 1983, as the coronavirus pandemic sapped demand for energy.

(Reporting by Scott DiSavino Editing by Marguerita Choy)

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