Natural Gas: A Temporary Fix?

Janet Chung, Kaitlin Clabbers, Amanda Turner

Introduction

The world's first industrial extraction of natural gas was in Fredonia, New York in 1825. Since then, it has become a very vital source of energy: nearly 24% of energy used in America is natural gas. Natural gas is used residentially for cooking and the heating and cooling of homes and industrially in manufacturing and waste treatment. Almost 51% of U.S. homes are heated/cooled by natural gas, and industries account for 43% of natural gas consumption. Natural gas has become very widely used, so there is a very precise system for extracting, purifying, and distributing the energy which is one of the main advantages. A disadvantage though is the possibility of environmental damage done from not only drilling at the well heads but potential for air pollution from methane emissions.


Group Opinion Piece

As a group, we obviously see the huge impact that natural gas has on energy and consumption, and its many uses. However, with such widespread usage of natural gas, it is inevitable that the supply will eventually run out, so we think it's important to be constantly researching other means of energy. Also, the issue of fracking is becoming more and more pressing, because of the potential environmental dangers it poses. Drilling into the earth is also expensive and time consuming, furthering the group's opinion that while natural gas is a solid source to use now, as a society we must look to the future and use other methods of energy.


Summary

This article summarizes a proposal made in November 2013 concerning drilling and fracking emissions in Colorado. The purpose of this proposal is to very strictly regulate well sites, and to attempt to limit the harmful waste produced by Colorado natural gas wells. Pollution is one of the main driving forces behind this new proposal, because a concentration of smog has surfaced near the site of natural gas wells, threatening public health and environmental wellbeing.


Summary

This article addresses the issue of transporting gas and oil, as well as the waste management of the resources. Transport is an aspect of energy distribution that is often overlooked, because we are typically only concerned with the final outcome: the consumers getting the energy. To help with transport, American railroad companies are working to add more lines to their routes to promote safe transport of potentially dangerous chemicals and gasses.


Sources

"Hydraulic Fracturing." Dangers of Fracking. N.p., n.d. Web. 09 Dec. 2013.


"Natural Gas." EIA Energy Kids - . N.p., n.d. Web. 08 Dec. 2013