A mixture of hydrocarbon gases that occurs naturally is called natural gas. It consists of methane, other higher alkanes, carbon dioxide, nitrogen, and hydrogen sulphide. Natural gas can be found in deep underground rock formations and in coal beds. It is found as methane clathrate or in combination with other hydrocarbon reservoirs. Petroleum is another resource that can be discovered near or with natural gas.
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Natural Gas Processes
There are two main processes that produce most natural gas: thermogenic and biogenic. Methanogenic organisms produce biogenic gas in marshes, bogs, landfills, and shallow sediments. Thermogenic gas is produced from buried organic material at higher temperatures and pressures deeper in the soil. Natural Gas must be processed to eliminate impurities such as water. This is done to make it marketable before it may be used as fuel. Byproducts of processing include ethane, propane, butane, pentane, hydrogen sulphide, carbon dioxide, water vapour, helium, and nitrogen.
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Global Distribution of Natural Gas
The USA is the largest producer accounting for 23% of the world’s natural gas production in 2019. It is followed by Russia, Iran, and Qatar. Some major oil fields are mentioned below:
|Russia||West Siberia east of the Gulf of Ob, Urengoy, and Yamburg.|
|Europe||Norway: Troll field
|North America||USA- Marcellus Shale, Hugoton
|Africa||Algeria- Hassi R’Mel|
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Distribution of Natural Gas in India
- Odisha, Assam, Tripura, the Gulf of Kutch, the Gulf of Khambhat, the Bassein field, the Bombay High, Barmer in Rajasthan, the KG basin, the Cuddalore district of Tamil Nadu, etc. India has 541 BCM (on-shore, in Assam, and Gujarat) of economically feasible natural gas reserves, plus an additional 190 BCM offshore in the Gulf of Cambay and 190 BCM in the Bombay High.
- A vast deposit of 400 BCM was just found in the Tripura Basin. In addition to these, there is a sizable reserve near the Andaman and Nicobar islands, and 72 BCM is located in the Rava structure. Based on remote sensing data, the reserves in Andaman and Nicobar are projected to be over 1700 BCM. Production has not yet started because it hasn’t been determined whether it would be profitable.
- This reserve will meet India’s demands for the next 100 years. This could lead to an economic revolution in Eastern India.
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Natural Gas Benefits
Here are the various benefits of Natural Gas described below:
- It is used for heating, cooking, and power generation.
- It’s also used as car fuel and a chemical feedstock for making plastics.
- It burns completely. Hence, it is cleaner as compared to other energy sources.
- It emits 70% less carbon dioxide when compared to other fossil fuels. It does not create ashes after releasing energy.
- Natural gas was predominantly employed in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries for lighting residential and commercial areas.
- It now has a far larger range of industrial and home applications.
- Turbines are turned by it to produce wind and sun energy.
- It is a domestic fuel as well. It operates heaters, ovens, boilers, and other appliances while heating our homes.
- For cooking and heating, some families utilise compressed natural gas (CNG), which is gas that has been held under high pressure.
- For low-load cars that demand excellent fuel economy, CNG is also a reasonably priced and environmentally beneficial transportation fuel.
- Off-road trucks and trains are powered by LNG or liquefied natural gas.
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Natural Gas Importance
- Currently, the manufacture of fertilisers consumes the majority of natural gas or roughly 40%.
- 10% is used for LPG, while about 30% is used to generate electricity. Production of natural gas has increased in tandem with each of these areas. Natural gas production has significantly increased, particularly since 1971.
- Nearly 10% of India’s electricity came from gas-powered power plants.
- Gas power plants are not operating because of a lack of feedstock, despite the fact that the nation is experiencing a severe power crisis.
- Existing facilities are using expensive imported liquefied natural gas at less than full capacity (LNG).
- India has insufficient oil reserves to meet its rising energy demands, and the problem is made worse by policy inaction that lengthens the project gestation periods.
- In order to protect ourselves from the worst effects of external shocks, we must diversify our energy supply by using alternative fuels.
- About 25% of the world’s energy is provided by natural gas. However, it only accounts for 6% of the energy used in India, where coal and crude oil are more prevalent. By 2030, the Indian government intends to increase the proportion of natural gas to 15%.
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Natural Gas Usage Limitations
- Natural gas is a finite, non-renewable resource. It is found extremely deep within the earth.
- It is impossible to collect all in-place gas from a producible deposit due to a lack of technology.
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Natural Gas UPSC
Up until 2024, the government will spend over 60 billion dollars on gas infrastructure across the nation, with a goal of raising gas’s proportion in the energy mix to 15% by 2030. Currently, gas makes up 6% of the nation’s overall energy mix. Currently, imports satisfy about half of the world’s demand for natural gas. India is currently the fourth-largest LNG importer. According to the Indian government, natural gas will make up 15% of the nation’s energy mix by 2030.
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