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Natural Gas Liquid Market Opportunities, Trends, And Forecasts To 2025

Natural gas liquids comprise carbon and hydrogen compounds and are included in the same molecular family of crude oil.


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Saif Bagwan

2 months ago | 3 min read

Natural gas liquids comprise carbon and hydrogen compounds and are included in the same molecular family of crude oil. These liquids are separated from natural gas for obtaining a pure and cleaner form that is used in electric, residential, power and commercial applications.

Propane, isobutane, butane, pentane and ethane are some of the commonly used natural gas liquids (NGL). NGLs are burned for space cooking and heating, blended into automotive fuel and are also used in petrochemical plants.

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Although these hydrocarbons are chemically similar, their applications are vastly different. For instance, ethane is used for producing ethylene, which is then used for producing plastics. On the other hand, propane is burnt for space cooking and heating which is then blended into automotive fuel.

Also, some propane is utilized as feedstock for petrochemicals. A mixture of butane and propane i.e. Autogas is widely used in parts of Europe, Australia and Turkey. Such a wide range of applications have increased the demand for natural gas liquids.

Environment-friendly approach for natural gas production to boost its consumption

Many key players are participating in industry programs that allow them to share important insights in reducing methane emissions. As per the Environmental Protection Agency, the energy sector has managed to reduce the emission of methane by 14 percent from 1990 to 2016.

On the other hand, the production of natural gas increased by over 50 percent during the same time. Also, The Environmental Partnership, which includes some of the top natural gas companies in the United States, have collectively committed to reduce methane emission over the next five years.

Along with these programs, many companies are voluntarily involved in U.S. EPA initiated programs like Methane Challenge and Natural Gas STAR. These programs encourage using technologies that will reduce the emission of methane. Such initiatives will boost the usage of natural gas liquid.

Constant developments in the industrial sector to increase the usage of natural gas liquids as petrochemical feedstock

There is a surging demand for synthetic rubber, polypropylene and polyethylene for producing plastics, tires and other such products. This has increased investments for developing the industrial sector. Also, extensive research on alternative fuel technologies along with growing emphasis on conserving the environment will stimulate the usage of cleaner resources like natural gas liquids.

Rising preference for clean energy sources poised to stimulate the consumption of natural gas liquid in North America

Soaring expansions in shale gas industry, growing independence on energy generation and low costs of natural gas liquids are some factors responsible for increased usage of NGLs in the North America region. In addition, fluctuations in exchange rate of currencies, product monetization and supply cost efficiencies have resulted in the growing use of NGLs.

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Countries like the United States are opting for cleaner energy sources and are attempting to become self-sufficient. This is the reason many natural gas companies are expanding their operations across the country. Also, the government is looking out for alternate reserves for improving the capacity of domestic gas liquid with growing power demands. These aspects will enhance the consumption of NGLs in the region.

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