Natural Gas Essay

852 words - 3 pages

THE NONRENEWABLE RESOURCE FORMATION
Like oil, natural is a product of decomposed organic matter, usually from ancient marine microorganisms left on the bottom of bodies of waters mixed with mud, silt, and sand on the sea floor, gradually becoming buried over time. Since it is sealed off in an oxygen-free environment and exposed to increasing amounts of heat and pressure, the organic matters undergo a thermal breakdown process that converts it into hydrocarbons. The lightest of these hydrocarbons exit in the gaseous state under normal conditions and are known collectively as natural gas.
Once this natural gas forms, it depends on two very critical characteristics of the surrounding rock: porosity and permeability. POPOSITY is referred to as the amount of empty space there is within the grains of the rock. Highly porous rocks like sandstones, on a good day have porosities of 5% to 25%. this gives them a large amount of space to store fluids like oil, water, and gas. PERMEABILITY is a measure of the degree in which the pore spaces in a rock are interconnected. A rock with high permeability will let more gas and liquids to flow very easily through the rock.
After natural gas forms, it then rises to the top of the surface through the pores spaces in the rock because of its low density compared to the surrounding rock.
MAJOR RESERVES AND HOW THE GAS IS EXTRACTED
The biggest reserve of natural gas is in...Russia!, which has seven times the reserves of the U.S. Our country is endowed with a substantial resource of natural gas and new findings has revised that number in the upward position in the last few years. But, what we Americans do best, we use more gas every year than can be produced so we depend on the Canadian fields to supply most of the balance through pipelines.
Even though the natural gas we use to heat our homes and cook our meals and the power plants contains more than 90% methane, several other substances may be mixed with the raw gas that is first extracted from the well. The substances can be water, carbon dioxide, hydrogen sulfide, liquid hydrocarbon condensate, and heavier gaseous hydrocarbons such as thane, propane, and butane. Most of these are separated from the methane at a processing facility.
Because pure natural gas is odorless, a sulfur-based compound with a rotten-egg smell is added before it is piped to homes so that leaks can be noticed very easy. I know we all have smelled that lovely aroma a time or two!
ENVIRONMENTAL IMPACT
We've all heard it before and our children's children will continue to hear it, Global Warming. But, even though...

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