By Ben Geman - 10/23/12 07:17 PM EDT
Wyden is expected to become chairman of the Senate Energy and
Natural Resources Committee if Democrats retain their majority in the
upcoming elections. Current chairman Jeff Bingaman (D-N.M.) is retiring
from the Senate.
Record U.S. natural-gas production is fueling an array of applications to export liquefied natural gas from Oregon, the Gulf Coast and elsewhere; a list of projects under review is here.
Wyden has expressed skepticism about the proposals, citing concerns that a surge in exports could raise natural gas costs for manufacturers and other sectors of the economy.
An Energy Department contractor is still working on a closely watched economic analysis of the proposed exports. But Wyden’s letter says the department must also explain how it will “establish the actual decision-making criteria” to be used for specific applications.