15 U.S. Code § 717b - Exportation or importation of natural gas; LNG terminals
(a) Mandatory authorization order
After six months from June 21, 1938, no person shall export any natural gas from the United States to a foreign country or import any natural gas from a foreign country without first having secured an order of the Commission authorizing it to do so. The Commission shall issue such order upon application, unless, after opportunity for hearing, it finds that the proposed exportation or importation will not be consistent with the public interest. The Commission may by its order grant such application, in whole or in part, with such modification and upon such terms and conditions as the Commission may find necessary or appropriate, and may from time to time, after opportunity for hearing, and for good cause shown, make such supplemental order in the premises as it may find necessary or appropriate.
(b) Free trade agreements
With respect to natural gas which is imported into the United States from a nation with which there is in effect a free trade agreement requiring national treatment for trade in natural gas, and with respect to liquefied natural gas—
(1) the importation of such natural gas shall be treated as a “first sale” within the meaning of section 3301 (21) of this title; and
(c) Expedited application and approval process
For purposes of subsection (a) of this section, the importation of the natural gas referred to in subsection (b) of this section, or the exportation of natural gas to a nation with which there is in effect a free trade agreement requiring national treatment for trade in natural gas, shall be deemed to be consistent with the public interest, and applications for such importation or exportation shall be granted without modification or delay.
(d) Construction with other laws
Except as specifically provided in this chapter, nothing in this chapter affects the rights of States under—
(e) LNG terminals
(1) The Commission shall have the exclusive authority to approve or deny an application for the siting, construction, expansion, or operation of an LNG terminal. Except as specifically provided in this chapter, nothing in this chapter is intended to affect otherwise applicable law related to any Federal agency’s authorities or responsibilities related to LNG terminals.
(2) Upon the filing of any application to site, construct, expand, or operate an LNG terminal, the Commission shall—
(B) give reasonable notice of the hearing to all interested persons, including the State commission of the State in which the LNG terminal is located and, if not the same, the Governor-appointed State agency described in section 717b–1 of this title;
(A) Except as provided in subparagraph (B), the Commission may approve an application described in paragraph (2), in whole or part, with such modifications and upon such terms and conditions as the Commission find  necessary or appropriate.
(B) Before January 1, 2015, the Commission shall not—
(i) deny an application solely on the basis that the applicant proposes to use the LNG terminal exclusively or partially for gas that the applicant or an affiliate of the applicant will supply to the facility; or
(ii) condition an order on—
(I) a requirement that the LNG terminal offer service to customers other than the applicant, or any affiliate of the applicant, securing the order;
(4) An order issued for an LNG terminal that also offers service to customers on an open access basis shall not result in subsidization of expansion capacity by existing customers, degradation of service to existing customers, or undue discrimination against existing customers as to their terms or conditions of service at the facility, as all of those terms are defined by the Commission.
(f) Military installations
(1) In this subsection, the term “military installation”—
(A) means a base, camp, post, range, station, yard, center, or homeport facility for any ship or other activity under the jurisdiction of the Department of Defense, including any leased facility, that is located within a State, the District of Columbia, or any territory of the United States; and
(2) The Commission shall enter into a memorandum of understanding with the Secretary of Defense for the purpose of ensuring that the Commission coordinate and consult  with the Secretary of Defense on the siting, construction, expansion, or operation of liquefied natural gas facilities that may affect an active military installation.
 So in original. Probably should be “finds”.
 So in original. Probably should be “coordinates and consults”.
Source(June 21, 1938, ch. 556, § 3,52 Stat. 822; Pub. L. 102–486, title II, § 201,Oct. 24, 1992, 106 Stat. 2866; Pub. L. 109–58, title III, § 311(c),Aug. 8, 2005, 119 Stat. 685.)
References in Text
The Coastal Zone Management Act of 1972, referred to in subsec. (d)(1), is title III of Pub. L. 89–454as added by Pub. L. 92–583, Oct. 27, 1972, 86 Stat. 1280, as amended, which is classified generally to chapter 33 (§ 1451 et seq.) of Title 16, Conservation. For complete classification of this Act to the Code, see Short Title note set out under section 1451 of Title 16 and Tables.
The Clean Air Act, referred to in subsec. (d)(2), is act July 14, 1955, ch. 360, 69 Stat. 322, as amended, which is classified generally to chapter 85 (§ 7401 et seq.) of Title 42, The Public Health and Welfare. For complete classification of this Act to the Code, see Short Title note set out under section 7401 of Title 42 and Tables.
The Federal Water Pollution Control Act, referred to in subsec. (d)(3), is act June 30, 1948, ch. 758, as amended generally by Pub. L. 92–500, § 2,Oct. 18, 1972, 86 Stat. 816, which is classified generally to chapter 26 (§ 1251 et seq.) of Title 33, Navigation and Navigable Waters. For complete classification of this Act to the Code, see Short Title note set out under section 1251 of Title 33 and Tables.
2005—Pub. L. 109–58, § 311(c)(1), inserted “; LNG terminals” after “natural gas” in section catchline.
Subsecs. (d) to (f). Pub. L. 109–58, § 311(c)(2), added subsecs. (d) to (f).
1992—Pub. L. 102–486designated existing provisions as subsec. (a) and added subsecs. (b) and (c).
Transfer of Functions
Enforcement functions of Secretary or other official in Department of Energy and Commission, Commissioners, or other official in Federal Energy Regulatory Commission related to compliance with authorizations for importation of natural gas from Alberta as pre-deliveries of Alaskan gas issued under this section with respect to pre-construction, construction, and initial operation of transportation system for Canadian and Alaskan natural gas transferred to the Federal Inspector, Office of Federal Inspector for Alaska Natural Gas Transportation System, until first anniversary of date of initial operation of Alaska Natural Gas Transportation System, see Reorg. Plan No. 1 of 1979, §§ 102(d), 203 (a),44 F.R. 33663, 33666, 93 Stat. 1373, 1376, effective July 1, 1979, set out under section 719e of this title. Office of Federal Inspector for the Alaska Natural Gas Transportation System abolished and functions and authority vested in Inspector transferred to Secretary of Energy by section 3012(b) ofPub. L. 102–486, set out as an Abolition of Office of Federal Inspector note under section 719e of this title. Functions and authority vested in Secretary of Energy subsequently transferred to Federal Coordinator for Alaska Natural Gas Transportation Projects by section 720d (f) of this title.
Delegation of Functions
Functions of President respecting certain facilities constructed and maintained on United States borders delegated to Secretary of State, see Ex. Ord. No. 11423, Aug. 16, 1968, 33 F.R. 11741, set out as a note under section 301 of Title 3, The President.
Ex. Ord. No. 10485. Performance of Functions Respecting Electric Power and Natural Gas Facilities Located on United States Borders
Ex. Ord. No. 10485. Sept. 3, 1953, 18 F.R. 5397, as amended by Ex. Ord. No. 12038, Feb. 3, 1978, 43 F.R. 4957, provided:
Section 1. (a) The Secretary of Energy is hereby designated and empowered to perform the following-described functions:
(1) To receive all applications for permits for the construction, operation, maintenance, or connection, at the borders of the United States, of facilities for the transmission of electric energy between the United States and a foreign country.
(2) To receive all applications for permits for the construction, operation, maintenance, or connection, at the borders of the United States, of facilities for the exportation or importation of natural gas to or from a foreign country.
(3) Upon finding the issuance of the permit to be consistent with the public interest, and, after obtaining the favorable recommendations of the Secretary of State and the Secretary of Defense thereon, to issue to the applicant, as appropriate, a permit for such construction, operation, maintenance, or connection. The Secretary of Energy shall have the power to attach to the issuance of the permit and to the exercise of the rights granted thereunder such conditions as the public interest may in its judgment require.
(b) In any case wherein the Secretary of Energy, the Secretary of State, and the Secretary of Defense cannot agree as to whether or not a permit should be issued, the Secretary of Energy shall submit to the President for approval or disapproval the application for a permit with the respective views of the Secretary of Energy, the Secretary of State and the Secretary of Defense.
Sec. 2. [Deleted.]
Sec. 3. The Secretary of Energy is authorized to issue such rules and regulations, and to prescribe such procedures, as it may from time to time deem necessary or desirable for the exercise of the authority delegated to it by this order.
Sec. 4. All Presidential Permits heretofore issued pursuant to Executive Order No. 8202 of July 13, 1939, and in force at the time of the issuance of this order, and all permits issued hereunder, shall remain in full force and effect until modified or revoked by the President or by the Secretary of Energy.
Sec. 5. Executive Order No. 8202 of July 13, 1939, is hereby revoked.