Many places online have been discussing the 168 trillion to 516 trillion cubic feet of natural gas discovered within the north Appalachian Plateau of the USA.
The yearly consumption of natural gas worldwide is slightly above 100 trillion cubic feet. The U.S. currently produces roughly 30 trillion cubic feet of gas a year. Horizontal drilling techniques could help to recover about 50 trillion cubic feet of gas from the Marcellus (Conservative estimate that 10% of the reserve can be accessed)
There are over 150,000 NGVs on U.S. roads today and over 5 million worldwide. 3% of the natural gas is used for transportation, 97% is used for heating and cooking. If nuclear power was used instead to generate electricity for the heating and cooking, then 32 times more vehicles could be natural gas powered. Natural gas vehicles have less pollution than gasoline powered vehicles.
As of January 1, 2007, proved world natural gas reserves, as reported by Oil & Gas Journal, were estimated at 6183 trillion cubic feet. Worldwide undiscovered natural gas is estimated at 4,136 trillion cubic feet.
That is equivalent to 25 per cent of the United States’ gas consumption or 30 per cent of the European Union’s gas consumption per year. It is also estimated that global gas flaring releases about 390 million tons of CO2 per year into the atmosphere.
According to the World Bank, the gas flared in Africa could generate half of the continent’s power consumption. Nigeria is probably the world’s largest flarer of natural gas. Nigerian officials want a venture to tackle gas flaring but western oil companies say they cannot meet a deadline to end flaring by 2009
Using corncob waste as a starting material, researchers have created carbon briquettes with complex nanopores capable of storing natural gas at an unprecedented density of 180 times their own volume and at one seventh the pressure of conventional natural gas tanks.
Researchers report development of a sponge-like material with the highest methane storage capacity ever measured. It can hold almost one-third more methane than the U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE) target level for methane-powered cars.
Brian Wang is a Futurist Thought Leader and a popular Science blogger with 1 million readers per month. His blog Nextbigfuture.com is ranked #1 Science News Blog. It covers many disruptive technology and trends including Space, Robotics, Artificial Intelligence, Medicine, Anti-aging Biotechnology, and Nanotechnology.
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