News & Commentary
International Energy Agency Report Paints a Rosy Outlook for Natural Gas
The International Energy Agency just released a special report that examines the conditions under which natural gas would play
a much greater role in the world's energy mix over the next few decades. The report, titled, "Are We Entering a Golden Age of
Gas?", presents key factors that are expected to result in significantly increased natural gas use globally. Below are some main findings and highlights of the
'Golden Age of Gas Scenario' (GAS Scenario) include:
- Global annual gas demand increases from 3.3 trillion cubic meters (tcm) to 5.1 tcm by 2035.
- The share of natural gas in the global energy mix increases from 21% to 25% by 2035.
- Increased use of natural gas will push coal use into decline, and surpass the share of coal in 2030.
- Power generation will remain the dominant sector for gas demand.
- North America is expected to remain self-sufficient in natural gas in the GAS scenario, enhancing its overall energy
- An increased share of natural gas in the global energy mix is not enough on its own to lower carbon emissions to levels that
could be expected to forestall average global temperature increases, but will contribute to stabilization of current trends.
Natural Gas Vehicles (NGVs) are expected to increase in use; however, the development of refueling infrastructure is critical - and is currently the
dominant barrier limiting growth of the NGV market. For the North American market, fleets continue to be the focus of infrastrucure
expansion efforts, and the price of gasoline and diesel remain key factors in the viability of natural gas as an alternative vehicle fuel.
Obama's recent Presidential Memorandum requiring 100% of light duty vehicles purchased by Federal fleets to be alternative fueled
vehicles by end of 2015 can be expected to give a boost to NGVs along with other alternatives such as electric vehicles.
Natural gas offers significant environmental benefits when compared to other fossil fuels; it is the lowest carbon fuel widely
available today for power generation, apart from nuclear. Unlike nuclear energy, natural gas does not require long term storage of
spent fuel or pose a widespread threat to health and the environment in the event of an accident or natural disaster such as an
In any scenario, the fact that natural gas resources are abundant and widely dispersed geographically suggests that the fuel can
help improve energy security for all major geographical regions. Global economic activity and the competitiveness of gas against
other forms of energy will continue to be major drivers of demand. However, the prospects for achieving timely, successful
development of gas resources depends largely on governmental policy and technological capability.
To find out more about assumptions and data used to develop the GAS
Scenario, read the full report at 'worldenergyoutlook.org'.
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To learn more about FirmGreen’s renewably sourced natural gas — biomethane branded as gCNG®, click here.
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