Natural Gas – A Clean and Affordable Transportation Fuel
Over 30 per cent of all the energy used in Canada each year fuels modes of transportation – from road to rail to air to marine. In Canada, the dominant transportation fuels used are gasoline and diesel, which account for nearly 85 per cent of the market. Natural gas represents 0.1 per cent of the total fuel use in transportation today, concentrated in initiatives in heavy-duty truck or small fleet truck applications. At a time when conventional transportation fuel prices are expected to rise, and their emissions are a concern for governments seeking to reduce them, more attention is being focused on natural gas as an alternative. CGA member utilities are intent on growing the market share for this affordable, low-emitting transportation fuel option. In this backgrounder, CGA explains the opportunity for natural gas as a transportation fuel, offers some specific suggestions for government action to help realize it, and explains the role of utilities in supporting it.
CGA SUBMISSION TO NATURAL RESOURCES CANADA’S CLEAN TECHNOLOGY FOR CANADA’S NATURAL RESOURCES CONSULTATION
The Canadian Gas Association (CGA) welcomes the opportunity to submit to the Clean Technology for Canada’s Natural Resources Consultation. CGA’s submission focuses on the role of our innovation agenda, and more specifically our natural gas innovation funding efforts. In addition, a series of priority areas for cleantech development in natural gas end use are outlined, and it is explained how partnerships with government and other stakeholders can further innovation in each of these areas. We hope this shows clearly the role that natural gas innovation can play in enabling cost effective emission reductions while improving the economic position of Canadian (and potentially global) natural gas users.
Natural gas has a central place in Canada’s energy mix meeting over 30 per cent of the country’s energy needs. Today over 6.7 million customers representing well over 20 million Canadians rely on affordable, clean, safe and reliable natural gas for heat and power in homes, apartments, buildings, businesses, hospitals and schools.
That reliability is assured because of the extensive distribution and storage infrastructure. This is especially important when temperatures fall and/or stay low for extended periods. Utilities can rely on stored natural gas to meet the demand and deliver the energy needed to heat homes, businesses and institutions during those cold winter days.
The following report focuses on natural gas storage and the role it plays in the delivery of energy solutions for Canadians. It summarizes:
the different types of storage facilities;
storage locations and volume capacity;
the role that storage plays in ensuring a reliable supply of natural gas, and
an outlook of storage levels ahead of this heating season.
The Canadian Natural Gas Opportunity: GHG Reduction Potential to 2030
Investment in transmission and distribution systems and access to an affordable, plentiful supply has dramatically changed the role of natural gas in the Canadian and continental market over several decades. At a national level, natural gas provides 32% of the energy used in Canada on an annual basis and plays a critical role as affordable energy for the Canadian economy.
As Canada enters the 2016-17 winter heating season, the resource base and supply of natural gas are at record levels across North America. In turn, natural gas storage levels are at new highs, helping ensure ample supplies and low prices for natural gas customers this winter. As a result natural gas is expected to remain the most affordable energy option for Canadian homes and businesses this heating season.