Although we don't believe in timing the market or panicking over market movements, we do like to keep an eye on big changes -- just in case they're material to our investing thesis.

What: Shares of liquefied natural gas producer Cheniere Energy (AMEX: LNG) didn't just pop today. They exploded to gains as high as 44.4% in a sudden burst of apocalyptically heavy afternoon trading.

So what: The U.S. Department of Energy just gave Cheniere the go-ahead to export natural gas to any country that isn't under a trade embargo. That's the final approval that Cheniere wanted before moving ahead with an expansion of its bread-and-butter liquefaction operations in the Sabine Pass area.

Now what: Cheniere has a tendency to jump -- up or down -- on little or no news, but this event is the real deal. Before pumping your life savings into the dividend-dripping stock of Cheniere subsidiary Cheniere Energy Partners (AMEX: CQP), please consider that this government approval simply started a long-term project, and that the Sabine liquefaction operation won't ship gas out of the expanded facility until 2015. In the meantime, the company must deal with a crushing debt load and spotty earnings.

Interested in more info on Cheniere Energy? Add it to your watchlist.

Fool contributor Anders Bylund holds no position in any of the companies discussed here. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool is investors writing for investors.