The short-term future of energy is "low-carbon". The longer-term future, a goal to which we are all committed, is "carbon free". Getting there will take time and will also require tools to make this transition possible. One of these is undoubtedly natural gas. Although also a fossil fuel, this raw material is uniquely placed to facilitate the transition from the current intensive use of carbon to a low-carbon future.
Natural gas is a blend of gaseous hydrocarbons, predominately methane, and is a cleaner energy source than coal or oil. In the transport sector, for example, the adoption of methane-based fuels can reduce CO2 emissions by 20-25 per cent compared to traditional fossil fuels such as gasoline and diesel.
But natural gas can have an even more positive impact when used as a means of generating electricity. In that context, natural gas has the lowest carbon footprint of all fossil fuels, generating about half the CO2 emissions of coal per kWh of electricity generated, even taking into account the “fugitive emissions” associated with methane production.