Natural Gas is the most environmental friendly fossil fuel as it produces lesser emissions than coal and burns a lot cleaner than gasoline. Before the second half of the 20th Century, the gas was dismissed as a useless by-product of crude oil production. It now accounts for about 22% of the world’s energy consumption with its uses spreading from the manufacture of goods to the produce of electricity.

To find Natural Gas, the rocks in an area have to first examine. The geologists consider rocks that are organically rich, rock formations that may serve as caprock and evidences on underground formations. Sound waves on small explosions near the surface may be recorded as they move through the underground rock. Any promising findings initiates the drilling of the caprock.

Geological mapping, surveys and aerial photographs are some of the techniques used to locate natural gas. For accurate findings, more recent technology are applied. These include:

  • Magnetic measurement- measures magnetic field of base rock to determine how mush sediment overlays it
  • Satellite imagery- help identify the surface structure and patterns needful in the search for probable underlying hydrocarbon deposits
  • Gravity mapping- determines the thickness of the sedimentary rock layer useful in identifying the base rock topography
  • Seismic sound wave reflection- measures the time to various rock units which reflect acoustic energy
  • Several theories have been put forth on how the gas itself comes to existence. Regardless of the theory one chooses to adopt, it is an irrefutable fact that natural gas can only be found deep under the earth. This owns to the reason that the gas is formed by organic matter under high pressure and the deeper underground, the better.

    Landfills is also another source of Natural Gas. In this process, organic matter breaks down in an oxygen-free environment and some of the microorganisms turn these materials to methane. A process known as biogenic methane. This kind of natural gas is either lost in the atmosphere or found close to the earth’s surface often as landfill.

    Natural Gas around the World

    Worldwide, Natural Gas is produced in nearly 50 countries with the former Soviet Union being the largest producer and also second in consumption. The United States is the second largest producer of Natural Gas and its leading consumer. Other large producers include Europe, the Middle East and Asia and the Pacific Countries.

    In the United States of America for instance, the gas can be found in a few of the South-Western states such as Texas, New Mexico and Oklahoma. Large quantities of the gas appear in Wyoming. The rest of the nation; though not every state, have smaller quantities of the gas.

    Several companies have as well grown to produce natural gas even as the demand increases. Leading companies include the Chevron, ExxonMobil, the BP, Petro China, Saudi Aramco, Gazprom, and Royal Dutch Shell among others. Most of these companies like the Chevron Corporation cut across the globe and engages in every aspect of the natural gas business like production, liquefaction, shipping, regasification, marketing and trading etc.