Former New York City Mayor Rudolph Giuliani on Friday urged President Barack Obama to fast-track applications to export natural gas as a means to promote energy production domestically and influence foreign policy.
If exports of liquefied natural gas had been approved five years ago, it would give the U.S. another tool to deal with Russia today, Mr. Giuliani said.
“You know how President Obama is looking at nonmilitary options to solve things such as the invasion of the Ukraine by Russia?” Mr. Giuliani said. “It would have been within our abilities to export a massive amount of natural gas — possibly to Europe; if not Europe, to other parts of the world — which would then have an impact on the world price of natural gas and would deprive [Russian President Vladimir] Putin of the only strength he has left in his economy. I believe this would be stronger than any of the sanctions placed on them.”
Mr. Giuliani argued that even if U.S.-sourced natural gas were shipped to customers in Asia, rather than Europe, it still would provide leverage. Other suppliers of liquefied natural gas, such as Australia, could then supply Europe.
Noting the debate over shale development domestically, Mr. Giuliani said the energy industry should conduct a “massive campaign to educate the American people.” Currently, New York State has a moratorium on Marcellus Shale development and several cities across the country have very publicly banned hydraulic fracturing.
“I would conduct this in the year 2015 — which is the lead-up to the 2016 presidential campaign — a very well thought-out, a very well-planned campaign throughout the United States,” he said. “Maybe focus more in the key states where the presidential election will be battled out among the Democrats and Republicans to explain what this can do for us, what it can do for our economy.”