Shell is one of the world’s largest suppliers of gas, which we transform into super-cooled liquid for shipping to energy-hungry countries. We have even developed ways to turn gas into purer motor oils, helping to reduce fuel consumption and keep engines cleaner.
Discover more about natural gas, and some of its more surprising applications.
Natural gas is the cleanest-burning fossil fuel, which we recover with advanced technologies from resources beneath the earth’s surface – from rock pores to reservoirs – on land and under water.
Today, more than ever, energy from fossil fuels powers human civilization. At the same time, the world needs to respond to climate change by reducing greenhouse gas emissions such as carbon dioxide (CO2).
Natural gas will be a vital part of the sustainable global energy mix, combined with capturing CO2 from industry and power plants to store underground (CCS) and backing-up renewable energy.
Natural gas for power
Modern gas-fired power plants emit around half the CO2 of modern coal plants, from the extraction of the fuel to the generation of electricity. For most countries, using more gas in power generation can make the largest, fastest and most affordable contribution to meeting short-term emission-reduction targets.
Many towns and cities are located far from gas fields, so we cool natural gas to -162° Celsius, shrinking its volume 600 times to form a liquid for easier, safer storage and shipment overseas. Once the liquefied natural gas (LNG) arrives at its destination, we turn it back into gas for piping to homes and businesses.
Natural gas also has the potential to help meet the growing global demand for transport. Converted into different forms, it can fuel ships, trucks, buses and trains. We are helping to power more vehicles using LNG.
A revolution offshore
We are building the world’s largest offshore floating facility, able to recover natural gas at sea and turn it into LNG for storage and shipment. Called Prelude FLNG, it will operate off the coast of Australia, producing enough LNG to more than satisfy the annual natural gas needs of a city like Hong Kong.
Moving production and processing out to sea is a major innovation that brings huge new energy resources within reach. It also helps to avoid the potential environmental impact of constructing and operating a plant on land, including laying pipelines to shore and building other infrastructure.
High-quality liquid products
In Qatar, which has the world’s largest gas field, we have constructed a giant plant called Pearl GTL to turn natural gas into liquid products that would otherwise be made from oil. These include lubricants, transport fuel and the raw materials for chemicals and detergents.