Recent media coverage about the direct use of natural gas in homes and businesses have centered on a false premise – that the only way to reduce greenhouse gas emissions is to mandate electrification and ban natural gas.
The truth is, natural gas has helped to reduce emissions across the country. Gas utilities have added 30 million more residential customers with virtually no increases in emissions over a nearly 50-year span. What’s more, increased natural gas efficiency and the growth of renewable energy have led to energy-related carbon dioxide emissions hitting 25-year lows. When used directly in homes and businesses, natural gas is three times more efficient than electricity generated with natural gas.
Moreover, emissions from residential homes account for only a small percentage of the emissions. For instance, according to the California Air Resources Board, the two largest contributors to greenhouse gas emissions in the state are transportation at 41% and industrial at 23%. Electricity generated in the state accounts for another 10% of emissions, by contrast the emissions attributed to residential homes is 7%.
Natural gas has a proven record of providing affordable, reliable and abundant energy to households and businesses throughout the country and should be a part of the solution. Without natural gas in homes and businesses we’re left with reduced efficiency, less reliability and significantly higher costs.