The People of America's Oil and Natural Gas Indusry

Natural Gas – At the Heart of Powering America

Mark Green

Mark Green
Posted November 2, 2017

OK, going a little more visual today. Leading off, we’ve got a terrific new video that shows natural gas is the “heart” of our country’s 21st-century electric power system – very timely given the heat that’s being generated by Energy Secretary Rick Perry’s proposal for the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) to alter the electricity marketplace in ways that would favor certain generating facilities. Take a look:

The video makes these important points:

  • Natural gas-fueled generation has unique attributes that enhance the reliability and resiliency of the U.S. power system.
  • Natural gas-fueled generation can quickly ramp up or down depending on generation needs.
  • Competitive markets have made natural gas the fuel of choice, benefiting consumers.

API unveiled the video at an Axios discussion of energy policy priorities, where Perry defended his recent request that FERC develop pricing rules that would boost certain generating facilities by rewarding them for having on-site fuel storage. We’ve argued that markets, not government, should choose power generation fuel sources because competition fosters innovation, efficiency, lower prices and works to benefit consumers.


Indeed, this is what natural gas-fueled generation is doing: providing attributes that ensure the health of the modern grid such as dispatchability, ramp rates, frequency response and others. Abundant, affordable natural gas has lowered energy costs for consumers while also playing the lead role in reducing U.S. emissions of carbon dioxide from power generation to their lowest point in nearly 30 years.

The proposal before FERC, which was criticized by a group of former FERC commissioners earlier this week, attracted some fire from U.S. Sen. Maria Cantwell at the Axios event:

“There is no case where the administration should be forcing a regulatory entity that makes decisions on pricing … that you should mandate to them that they should charge consumers more for coal just because you believe in mandating it. That’s not the market. That’s not fair and reasonable, and what it would do is raise prices on consumers as much as 13 percent a year. Who needs that?”

Answer: Not the U.S., not U.S. consumers. Below, some of the Twitter traffic generated at Axios’ discussion:


Mark Green joined API after a career in newspaper journalism, including 16 years as national editorial writer for The Oklahoman in the paper’s Washington bureau. Mark also was a reporter, copy editor and sports editor. He earned his journalism degree from the University of Oklahoma and master’s in journalism and public affairs from American University. He and his wife Pamela live in Occoquan, Va., where they enjoy their four grandchildren.