Feature Reports

Natural Gas Producers and Consumers

Summary Natural Gas Producers and Consumers

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© ZYLBERMAN LAURENT / TOTAL

Natural gas is the third most widely used energy source worldwide. Reserves are more widely distributed geographically than oil, although almost half of conventional reserves are located in Russia, Iran and Qatar. The United States is the world’s leading gas producer. It produces shale gas, a so-called unconventional natural gas. 

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Featured Figures

Global Gas Consumption

Following a gain of 3% in 2017, world natural gas consumption rose by more than 5% in 2018. As a result, the share of natural gas in the global energy mixThe range of energy sources of a region. increased, while that of coalCoal is ranked by its degree of transformation or maturity, increasing in carbon content from... shrank. Consumption was chiefly led by the United States, China, Russia and Iran. International trade in natural gas was up sharply, buoyed in particular by liquefied natural gas (LNG)LNG is composed almost entirely of methane. Liquefying the gas reduces its initial volume by a factor of around 600... . Australia, the United States and Russia have sharply expanded their liquefactionConversion of a gas to a liquid. In industrial applications, gas is liquefied by cooling and/or pressurization... capacity to support the growing international market for LNG.

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The United States accounted for over half of the growth in global natural gas production. With a year-on-year gain of 11.5% (in addition to a 16.5% rise in oil production), the United States registered the largest ever annual increases in the history of energy. Russia, Iran and Australia also contributed to the gas boom.

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