LNG is liquefied natural gas, which is natural gas that has been converted to liquid form. Natural gas is made mostly of methane (CH4), the simplest hydrocarbon compound. Natural gas changes to a liquid state at about minus 259 degrees Fahrenheit (-259°F) the same way water turns to a liquid when cooled below 212 degrees Fahrenheit (212°F). LNG takes up 1/600th the physical space required when in gaseous form. Thus, LNG provides an economical way to ship natural gas from one location to another. LNG is odorless, colorless, non-corrosive, and non-toxic.
Natural gas is one of the cleanest of all fossil fuels producing 50% less CO2 emissions than coal and 37% less emissions than oil. Natural gas also has almost no particulate pollution, sulfur dioxide, or mercury emissions.
Taking advantage of low energy prices is the right thing to do for Hawai'i. Utilizing LNG is just one way we can relieve the high energy costs in our community. LNG provides a cost effective way for homeowners to cook, heat water and dry clothes. LNG can also be used for transportation and power production.
Overreliance on one fuel or feedstock leaves us vulnerable to changes in the market. Utilizing clean burning natural gas will diversify our fuel supply and increase energy security and reliability. Efficient natural gas turbines also have the ability to quickly cycle up and down to meet the fluctuating power demands from intermittent renewable energy. Generating power from a clean, EPA compliant, lower cost fuel like natural gas to meet these fluctuations means we can adopt more intermittent renewable energy while lowering our carbon footprint and energy costs.
At current prices LNG is a cheaper alternative than petroleum fuels used in Hawai'i. Because LNG can be shipped inter-island and used in multiple applications such as utility gas, electricity generation and ground and marine transportation, it is a statewide energy solution, not just an O'ahu solution. LNG can reduce our reliance on imported crude oil and keep the cost of other fuels in check.