Is Propane a Green Source of Energy?

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While propane is a clean-burning fuel, it is still a non-renewable fossil fuel and one that is derived from natural gas and crude petroleum. The United States actually uses more propane than any other country, and although the vast majority of it is produced here, the petroleum we derive it from is largely imported.

Propane is colorless and odorless, so an odorant called mercaptan is added to alert one of escaping gas, which is flammable. Under normal atmospheric pressure and temperature, propane is a gas. Under moderate pressure and/or lower temperatures, however, it changes into a liquid which can be stored in tanks for home heating or barbecue grills.

According to the National Propane Gas Association, “It could cost up to twice as much to operate your range, water heater, dryer or furnace with electricity than with propane gas. Propane gas furnaces and heaters provide more consistent warm air throughout your home at a lower cost than electric heat pumps and have a longer average life span.”

Another consideration is the transportation impact of propane and the amount of pollution produced. Railroad tank cars, transport trucks, barges, and tanker ships are used to transport it to bulk plants where local propane dealers fill their delivery tank trucks.


Tag(s): Energy, Greenhouse Gas Emissions / Global Warming


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