Natural Gas: Saving More and Emitting Less
Earlier this week, the American Gas Association released its 2015 Playbook. The report shows that natural gas continues to deliver safe, affordable, and reliable energy, while also providing environmental and energy efficiency benefits.
Customers are deriving financial savings from using natural gas. For instance, households that use natural gas for space heating, water heating, cooking and clothes drying save an average of $693 per year compared to customers who use electricity to power these activities. Over the past five years, low natural gas prices have provided a total savings of almost $65 billion to natural gas customers, allowing this money to be used for other necessities.
Natural gas utilities are becoming more efficient while emitting smaller amounts of greenhouse gases. In 2012, natural gas allowed customers to save 136 trillion BTUs of energy and offset 7.1 million metric tons of carbon dioxide emissions.
Pipeline incidents have also declined by approximately 40 percent over the past three decades due to advances in technology. Despite these significant reductions in pipeline incidents, the industry has installed more than 600,000 additional miles of pipeline, providing service to 17 million more customers.
States have recently taken notice of these potential benefits and have worked to expand their existing natural gas infrastructure. A total of 25 states have adopted or considered innovative expansion proposals while 38 have specific rate mechanisms that foster accelerated replacement of outdated pipelines.