Report: 90% of natural gas consumed in U.S. produced in U.S. |

Report: 90% of natural gas consumed in U.S. produced in U.S.

Stephen Huba
Black & Veatch
The Tenaska Westmoreland Generating Station, which came online in December. The natural gas-fueled power plant is in South Huntingdon near Smithton.

Natural gas is one of the main sources of energy in the United States — that’s no surprise.

But in 2018, more than 90% of the natural gas consumed in the United States was produced domestically, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration.

U.S. natural gas production and consumption have both generally increased since the mid-2000s, and both reached record highs of about 30 trillion cubic feet in 2018, according to EIA.

Production has increased in the past decade as the widespread adoption of horizontal drilling and hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, techniques has allowed producers to more economically produce natural gas from the Marcellus shale and other shale formations, EIA said.

In 2018, gross withdrawals of natural gas and other compounds extracted at the wellhead in the United States totaled 37 trillion cubic feet, with more than half coming from shale gas wells, EIA said.

As production has increased, exports of natural gas have also increased and have started to surpass natural gas imports. The United States became a net exporter of natural gas in 2017 and, in 2018, exported a record of nearly 4 trillion cubic feet of natural gas, EIA said.

In 2018, more than two-thirds of the dry natural gas consumed in the United States was used by the electric power and industrial sectors.

The U.S. electric power sector has been the largest end user of natural gas in three of the last four years, surpassing the industrial sector for the first time in 2012. In 2018, about 35% of the natural gas consumed in the United States was used by the electric power sector to generate electricity and heat, EIA said.

Stephen Huba is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Stephen at 724-850-1280, [email protected] or via Twitter .

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