How Much Natural Gas Is Left In The World, & When Will We Run Out?

How Much Natural Gas Is Left In The World, & When Will We Run Out?

This is a short guide where we outline how much natural gas is left in the world.

We look at total numbers, as well as how many years of natural gas supply there might be left.

 

How Much Natural Gas Is Left In The World?

  • As of January 1, 2018, there was an estimated 7,124 trillion cubic feet (Tcf) of total world proved reserves of gross natural gas.

– eia.gov

 

How Much Longer (How Many Years) Will Natural Gas Reserves Last – When Will We Run Out?

  • [Taking into consideration the current rate of natural gas production and current known natural gas reserves, we have about 52.8 years worth of natural gas reserves left]

– ourworldindata.org

 

  • proven … [natural] gas reserves are equivalent to around … 52 years at current production levels

– worldcoal.org

 

  • We’ll still have gas and coal left by the time oil runs out in 2052. But if we increase gas production to fill the energy gap left by oil, then those reserves will only give us an additional eight years, taking us to 2060

– ecotricity.co.uk

 

Total Natural Gas Reserves vs Recoverable Natural Gas Reserves

It’s important to distinguish between total natural gas reserves and how much of that is recoverable natural gas reserves.

Recoverable natural gas reserves includes ‘only the natural gas that can be mined with today’s mining technology after considering accessibility constraints and recovery factors’.

 

Estimating How Much Natural Gas Is Left Can Possess At Least Some Level Of Uncertainty

Estimating exactly how much natural gas is left can be slightly difficult because natural gas is found underground.

Estimates are made based on varying levels/degrees of geologic certainty.

Further to this – new reserves of different fossil fuels can be found which increase the current reserve estimation totals. Although, these new reserves are usually small.

It’s worth reading this guide about why we may never run out of certain mined resources.

 

Burning The Remaining Natural Gas Reserves, & Global Warming

Something that is not often discussed is that the quantity of natural gas reserves left needs to be put in context with the impact of burning it on greenhouse gas emissions and climate change/global warming.

 

  • … we will have to leave between 65 to 80 percent of current known reserves untouched if we are to stand a chance of keeping average global temperature rise below our two-degrees global target

– ourworldindata.org

 

Is There Hope For The Future (What Will We Do) If We Run Out Of Natural Gas?

Renewable energy sources and alternative energy sources like solar, wind, water, nuclear energy and others offer energy sources for the future separate to natural gas.

 

Sources

1. https://www.worldcoal.org/coal/where-coal-found

2. https://www.ecotricity.co.uk/our-green-energy/energy-independence/the-end-of-fossil-fuels

3. https://ourworldindata.org/how-long-before-we-run-out-of-fossil-fuels

4. https://www.eia.gov/tools/faqs/faq.php?id=52&t=8

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