The crisis in Ukraine has sparked renewed calls among Republicans and energy-state Democrats for an easing of restrictions on natural-gas exports.
While there are those in the West who would like to hit Russia hard with sanctions, the problem is that Europe relies on the country for 30% of its gas. The figure is 70% in Ukraine, which is also a key energy route.
Increasing U.S. gas exports could reduce that reliance and give the West a freer hand in dealing with Russia, particularly in the long term.
"I would certainly welcome consultation in terms of how to go forward," Energy Secretary Ernest Moniz said yesterday.