Natural Gas

What is Natural Gas?

Natural gas is a fossil fuel like oil and coal. It is a “nonrenewable” fuel because it takes millions of years to form deep in the earth before it can be used again. When microorganisms, sea plants and animals died over 300 million years ago, even before the dinosaurs, they settled on the bottom of the oceans which covered most of the earth. Layers of dead sea plants, animals, sand, mud, and other debris built up over time and the pressure and heat from the earth turned them into petroleum and natural gas. The natural gas would get trapped in pockets of underground rocks. Sometimes the gas would seep up to the earth's surface and dissipate into the air or ignite from lightning strikes.

Natural gas in it's pure form is colorless, odorless and shapeless. Only after processing is the "rotten egg" odor added for safety. It is a combination of several gases like propane, butane, carbon dioxide, ethane, oxygen, nitrogen and hydrogen sulfide, but primarily made up of methane gas so when you burn it gives of heat energy. There are some renewable sources for methane like garbage in landfills that produce some gas.