Natural gas is a good energy option for many homes. Heating with natural gas often can cost less than heating with electricity, propane or heating oil. Gas service providers have a competitive market which is good and bad for you. It is good because when a market is competitive the prices are competitive and you can search around for the best deal. It is bad because there are so many options and sometimes it can be confusing figuring out which provider to go with. Before you start your search for a provider it might be helpful to understand a little more about what the heck Natural gas even is. Below is the breakdown of what Natural gas is.
Who uses Natural Gas: There are three categories of distribution: residential, commercial, and industrial.
Residential: For residential distribution to our homes, energy is required to heat them, cook in them, take hot showers, dry our clothes and to generate electricity.
Commercial: Similarly to residential needs stores, offices, hospitals, schools and other like enterprises heat and cool their spaces with natural gas. Natural gas also can produce on-site electricity generation. There is greater operational flexibility with natural gas plants than coal plants because they have a quicker range of rapidly heating up or turning down. Money Saver: on-site electrical generation is often less expensive than off-site generation.
Industrial: Natural gas is used in many different industries such as glass, paper, chemical, plastic, metal and more.
What is Natural Gas in Regards to My Home: Natural gas is arguably the most useful and safest form of energy that we use every day. Natural gas is made up of hydrogen and carbon and can be found alone or with oil. Natural gas is the most used energy source because it is combustible and burns more cleanly than most other energy sources. Natural Gas is also one of the most cost efficient forms of energy available.
Where Does Natural Gas Come From: Natural gas is a result of the remains of plants and animals buried and exposed to heat for thousands of years. The soil and rocks that buried these elements compress and transform the once living organisms into natural gas. The gas molecules live in small holes and cracks in the surrounding rock formations. Once extracted it is processed, reduced and cleaned, and then transported, through pipelines, into our homes
Fun Fact: When the natural gas is extracted from the earth by-products including ethane, propane, butane, and sulphur come with it. The by-products are then separated and used as other forms of energy.
How does Natural Gas get to my home: Natural gas travels through a network of interconnected pipelines. These lines pass natural gas quickly and over many miles. Simply put, the pipelines gather the gas after extracted and cleaned, it is then pressurized, pushed out to smaller lines, distributed and then depressurized so we then can get the proper amount into our homes and businesses.
Fun Fact: Natural gas is odorless but the distribution companies odorize it so that we can identify when it is on or leaking.
The My Utilities Team is happy to assist you with any further questions too.