Natural Gas6.74 USD/MMBtu -0.03 (-0.41%) (Last updated - December 02, 2022 12:53 PM UTC )
3.54 - 9.66
December 02, 2022 12:53 PM UTCData Powered by Stockdio. Data delayed by 5 minutes unless otherwise indicated.
Natural gas is the cleanest conventional fossil fuel available for energy usage. This odourless and colourless gas has a high calorific value of approximately 50,000 kilojoules per kilogram and produces almost no residue or smoke on burning.
It is composed of shorter chain hydrocarbons, with Methane (CH4) being the primary constituent. Moreover, there are small quantities of Ethane (C₂H₆), Propane (C₃H₈), Butane (C₄H₁₀) and Pentane (C5H12) present along with Carbon dioxide, Nitrogen, Hydrogen Sulphide and Helium.
The formation of natural gas is a very long-term process, and it can take millions to tens of million or sometimes even hundreds of million years to convert the organic material present in the plants and animal remains (Hydrocarbon source) into natural gas. This process starts with the deposition of animal and plant remains rich in organic matter along with inorganic material like clay, limestone, silt, and sand to form reservoir rock. With continuous deposition, piling occurs and with the passage of time, it gets buried under different formations (Cap rocks).
Due to this continuous deposition, extreme pressure and temperature under optimum geological conditions, the organic matter transforms into hydrocarbons. In petroleum geologists’ terminology, this whole setup of organic matter along with different types of rock is known as “kitchen” while the maturation process is termed as “cooking”. The type of hydrocarbon, whether gaseous hydrocarbon (natural gas) or liquid hydrocarbon (crude oil), is dependent upon the extent and the time for which this cooking happens.
Supply and Demand:
The factors that define the demand and supply of natural gas are:
- Global economic growth
- Production and storage of natural gas from OPEC, OPEC+ and Non-OPEC Oil Producing Countries
- Price and availability of other fuels
- Duration and extent of the summer and winter seasons around the globe
Along with this, natural gas is categorised as a “bridge fuel” as many experts are considering it to ease out the transition process of entirely switching to non-conventional renewable fuels like solar and wind energy. In the reference case of the US Energy Information Administration, natural gas consumption is expected to grow by 31% by 2050.
Considering the aforementioned facts along with infrastructure and supply constraints, the demand for natural gas is expected to remain stable in the medium term. However, in the short term, due to supply variabilities, the demand can have a high level of volatility particularly during the wintertime.
ASX Natural Gas companies
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Frequently Asked Questions
Sweet gas is the term used for referring natural gas with very little or no Hydrogen Sulphide (H2S). As H2S is corrosive and toxic in nature, sweet gas is preferred over sour gas (gas having higher concentration of H2S content).
The H2S concentration in sour gas is 4 ppm by volume, which is equivalent to 5.7 mg of H2S per metre cube of natural gas.
Gas sweetening is done to remove Hydrogen Sulphide along with Carbon Dioxide and mercaptans. It eliminates the corrosive nature of natural gas, thereby extending the life of transportation and processing facilities.
Natural gas futures are physically settled derivative instruments with a contract size of 10,000 MMBtu (Million Metric British Thermal Unit).
As there is a high level of volatility in natural gas prices due to the seasonal/weather and other variations, these natural gas futures serve as an instrument to protect and manage the risk of the traders from unexpected variations in the natural gas prices. This is done by hedging the natural gas futures against the natural gas purchase. They also give an opportunity to book profit on large price movements of natural gas with a leveraged product, thus allowing a more efficient way of employing trading capital. However, leveraged products with high price volatility can attract exposure to great losses as well.
In order to transport natural gas from the production basin to end markets, infrastructure companies construct and manage the midstream infrastructure (this includes processing plants, pipelines and storage facilities). Natural gas marketing companies do not own this midstream infrastructure and thus pay a fee to the natural gas infrastructure companies. This fee is analogous to the toll booth fee which we normally pay for using highways and expressways, and hence the term "toll booth" business model is used by natural gas infrastructure companies.
Ethanethiol or Ethyl Mercaptan is a chemical with strong pungent smell of rotten eggs, which is added to LPG to detect any leakage. Since natural gas is odourless, any leak can go unnoticed but due to peculiar rotten egg smell of Ethyl Mercaptan, the leak can be noticed easily.
The natural gas’s flammability range varies between 5% and 15%. Therefore, if the concentration of natural gas falls in this range, it can cause an explosive mixture. Hence the use of Ethyl Mercaptan as a warning agent is extremely important.