Propane is a byproduct of natural gas processing and petroleum refining.

It remains a gas at standard temperatures and pressures but can be compressed to a liquid form to make transportation easier. It is a common fuel item and is a member of the liquefied petroleum gases (LP gases) nomenclature.

Due to the byproduct nature of propane, demand increases cannot be easily met without increasing natural gas processing or petroleum financing. Roughly 90 percent of US consumption is produced within the country, while the remaining 10 percent is mostly imported from Canada. All American propane is stored within salt caverns such as those found in Mont Belvieu, TX and Conway, KS. Propane for automotive use produced in the US contains much lower levels of butane (5%) in comparison to Europe, Asia and Australia (~30%).

Uses

  • Heating & Cooking
    • Propane has remained a popular choice for cooking and barbequing due to its low boiling point (minus 44 degrees)
    • Used for heating and cooking in recreational vehicles and campers
    • Used as a transportable fuel for homes
  • Travel
    • International ships sometimes reuse propane from ocean-going ships that transport LPG. When the sun evaporates the propane during the voyage, the international ship catches the evaporating propane gas and feeds it into the air intake system of the ship’s diesel engine. This is practice is set to become an international agreement by 2020 as it reduces created pollution.