What is Natural Gas
Natural gas consists mainly of methane, followed by ethane, propane, and butane. It’s formed by decomposing organic matter trapped in porous rock beneath the surface of the earth.
It’s lighter than air
You can’t see natural gas when it’s first extracted from the earth. It’s a colourless, odourless fossil fuel. Unlike other fuels such as diesel, petrol or liquid petroleum gas (LPG), which are heavier than air, natural gas is lighter than air, and will more readily dissipate if a natural gas leak occur. While this makes it different to LPG, a natural gas leak must still be taken seriously.
Why it smells
Before it’s piped to domestic consumers, an odorant is added to natural gas as a ready means of leak detection.
How is natural gas used?
- At home – Cooking, heating and heating water
- Commercial – Cooking, heating, drying and heating water
- Industrial – Heating, Drying, processing and manufacturing
- Power generation – for power station turbines and co-generation plants
- Transport – as a fuel for vehicles such as buses, cars and auto rickshaws