Energy Overview: Prospects for Natural Gas

  • Michael D. MaxEmail author
  • Arthur H. Johnson


Availability of energy is key to wealth, political and military power, and living standards. Energy availability and consumption may be the most reliable measure of an economy. There is a direct relationship between energy consumption and countries’ gross domestic product (GDP) and the Human Development Index (HDI). Energy security, which is the relative certainty that energy supplies for a country will be available, constitutes a primary security concern for countries with high energy demands and countries with increasing energy use. Even though there appears to be no immediate shortage of hydrocarbons, this non-renewable resource is being supplemented by renewable energy. The Renewable Energy Era has already begun. Reduction in CO2 emissions is underway because of government regulations and market forces. A completely renewable energy future may be in our future, but its timing is very uncertain as renewable energy presently contributes less than 10 % of energy, and that supply is highly concentrated geographically. The potentially largest natural gas resource remaining on Earth, oceanic natural gas hydrate (NGH), may substantially supplement the natural gas supply far into the future. An additional benefit is that natural gas produces less CO2 per Btu and also has a much lower pollution potential than any other combustion fuel. Natural gas is the clean hydrocarbon fuel that will reach into the renewable energy future. Its continued availability at affordable prices becomes increasingly important as coaland oil power plants are retired and energy demand becomes increasingly filled by development of renewable or intermittent power sources.


Renewable energy Fossil fuels Gross domestic product Human development index Quality of life Energy mix Climate 


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© Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Hydrate Energy International LLCKennerUSA
  2. 2.Hydrate Energy International LLCKennerUSA

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