Have you wondered where the gas you use at home originates? Do you know the countries that provide you with fuel you can barely survive without? A natural deposit that forms from decomposition of animal and plant deposits exposed to high pressure and intense heat, natural gas provides with fuel used in homes as well as industrial establishments. Otherwise referred to as fossil fuel, natural gas forms beneath the earth’s surface in a process that takes millions of years. While gas deposits are found in most parts of the globe, it is the developed countries that lead in its production. This is a result of the huge resources required in its expedition and production. In recent times, a number of developing countries are also joining the league of gas producers promising an increase in stocks of this valued commodity.
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Here is a list of the leading nations whose gas production capacity is unmatched.
Closing the list of top 10 natural gas producing countries, Algeria produces over 55 billion cubic meters for export. Its production translates to 2.3% of the total world production. This factor saw it placed in the fifth position among the leading natural gas exporters in the world. Believed to be a home to more unexplored gas deposits. The country has great potential to climb higher on the ladder of gas producers. The government of Algeria through energy policy of Algeria has in place an outlined development structure to increase its gas production and exportation in the same regard.
9. Saudi Arabia
A traditional and leading oil exporter in the globe, Saudi Arabia is also among the lead gas producers today. It is believed to be the home of the biggest natural gas reserves in the gulf region. Reliable findings indicate the country has natural gas reserves that are over 7 trillion cubic meters. Gas production in Saudi Arabia is estimated an 84 billion cubic meters annually which translates to 2.4% of the world’s production. With high domestic demand for gas, Saudi Arabia is not among the leading gas exporters but produces natural gas mostly for the domestic market. Currently the country is working on an upstream gas investment plan that will increase its power generation capabilities to feed the growing demand in its domestic market.
In the eight position of highest gas, producing countries is Netherlands. The country has a capacity to produce 86 billion cubic meters of natural gas annually. This translates to 2.5% of the total gas production from around the world. With intent to increase its energy resources for the nation and export needs, the country is investing heavily in exploration of more reserves alongside production facilities.
Injecting a total of 109 billion cubi meters to the world’s natural gas production. Algeria takes the 7th position among the biggest producers. This translates to 3.1% of the total natural gas produced annually. Also among the leading exporters, natural gas is among the key contributors to the country’s economy. With its current reserves in Barents Sea and the exploration expected in the Arctic, the production capacity from the country is expected to increase tremendously. However, the exploration raises concerns over environments effects and the overall global warming concerns.
Rated as one of the fastest growing economic giant, China is also a leading gas producer holding the sixth position. The country produces an estimated 115 billion cubic meters of natural gas annually. This makes a total of 3.3% of the total amount of gas produced globally. A renown manufacturing hub, China uses the produced gas to feed its domestic needs hence not among the major exporters. Described as the leading producer of greenhouse gases, China is embracing on plans to increase production of natural gases believed to be more environmental friendly alongside feeding the ever growing demand within its domestic market.
With production that accounts for 4% of the total world gas production annually, Canada is placed fifth in the list of high gas producers. Producing a total of 137 cubic meters of gas in 2013, the country has in place extension plans to increase its production. The plans aims to double production by 2015 with an investment of $386 billion expected to be injected into the project. Upon completion of the expansion project, the country is expecting to reap a total of $24.5 billion in annual revenues from the gas. This is alongside creating employment to over 6.2 million persons hence tremendously boosting the country’s economy.
The world’s fourth gas producer, Qatar injects an estimated 4.6% of the total global production. It is on record as being the second largest gas exporter. Producing over 155 cubic meters of gas annually, the country exports a total of 122 billion cubic meters of natural gas. Having invested heavily in gas-to-liquid infrastructure, the country has adequate capacity to export higher amounts of natural gas in liquid form. Current estimates indicate that the country produces 174,000 barrels of liquid gas daily and the production is expected to increase with more infrastructure projects underway. Qatar maintains huge reserves of natural gas deposits in its North Field Gas reservoir hence expected to maintain its position among the leading producers.
Injecting 4.8% into the international grid annually, Iran takes the third position as a leading gas producer. Estimates indicate the country has capacity to produce over 163 cubic meters of natural gas annually. Holding 17% of the world’s gas reserves, Iran is considered to produce only a small share from its potential. With the ever raising demand for natural gas, Iran is expected to increase its production and export of the natural gas hence placing it higher among the producers. This is evident from the country’s efforts on expanding its production capacity.
The world’s second largest natural gas producer, Russia injects an estimated 18.6% into the international market annually. Producing over 627 cubic meters of the gas, the country ranks as the biggest exporter of natural gas. Biggest importers of the Russian gas included European countries which import a total of 2008 cubic meters of the natural gas. A bigger share of gas production interests are controlled by US owned companies. Being among the biggest gas producers, Russia has over the decades been accused of influencing politics and market prices of natural gas in different countries across the globe.
1. United States
Taking the lead in natural gas production is United States. The country has gas production is estimated at over 687 billion cubic meters annually. This accounts for 20.4% of the worlds total gas production. Unlike other gas producing countries, United States consumes the highest share of its gas products. It is approximated that over 95% of gas consumed annually is from domestic production. Currently, the country is investing highly on tight gas production technologies which are estimated to increase production to over 30 trillion cubic feet by year 2030. This comes despite concerns by environmentalists on the risk of groundwater contamination and an increase in seismic activity among others.
Natural gas is the most common form of fuel today. With its efficiency and convenience, its demand continues to grow by each day. The leading gas producing countries always face the challenge to feed the ever growing demand for both domestic and international consumers. Exploration and discovery of new reserves alongside depletion of some of the traditional reserves may in the coming years affect the ranking of the highest producers.