The shale gas boom has flattened natural-gas prices and, by extension, made electricity cheap in the U.S. Those low energy prices - and stagnant wages - are giving U.S. manufacturers a significant cost advantage over manufacturing in other developed countries. The advantage flows all the way to resins processors, as depicted in this process chain.
The economic viability of the process chain, and the advantage to U.S. manufacturing, is almost entirely dependent on cheap and plentiful natural gas. Will the shale gas production forecast by the Energy Information Administration be enough to meet increased demand from these sources (and, if yes, will environmental pressure subside)?
1.Massive new industrial use
2.Electricity generation (more utilities switching from coal to cheaper/cleaner natural gas)
3.Transportation (natural gas-fueled vehicles)
4.LNG exports (liquefied natural gas exported to Europe and the Far East)...