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Small-scale LNG: Niche business with room to grow

In the shadow of the world's multibillion-dollar LNG developments runs a smaller piece of the liquefied natural gas industry.

This part of the industry involves consuming LNG in sips not gulps, deliveries by trucks not tankers. It mainly encompasses the original commercial use of liquefied natural gas – as a so-called peak-shaving fuel for local gas and electric utilities. But efforts also are afoot to extend LNG's reach into transportation fuels, oil-field power and other niche markets.

If costs can be wrung from the machinery of small-scale liquefaction, the resulting efficiencies can make niche LNG an important growth sector for the industry.

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