Propane is an approved, clean fuel listed in the 1990 Clean Air Act as well as the National Energy Policy Act of 1992. It is one of the lightest, simplest hydrocarbons in existence, and, as a result, is one of the cleanest burning of all fossil fuels. Burning coal to generate electricity releases carbon dioxide and other pollutants into the atmosphere. Per pound of fuel burned, coal emits more than twice the amount of carbon dioxide as does propane. By using propane gas instead of electricity, consumers can cut emissions and help preserve the environment. Propane gas is nontoxic, so it's not harmful to soil and water. Because propane does not endanger the environment, the placement of propane tanks either above or below ground is not regulated by the Environmental Protection Agency. According to the EPA, much of the sulfur dioxide in the atmosphere, which produces acid rain, is attributable to coal-fired electricity-generating facilities. In contrast, neither the process by which propane is produced nor the combustion of propane gas produces significant acid rain contaminants.
IN THE HOME
Consumers use propane for heating and cooling homes, heating water, cooking, refrigeration, drying clothes, barbecuing, lighting, and relaxing in front of the gas fireplace.
ON THE FARM
Propane is a staple on farms, where it is used in a wide range of agricultural applications:
COMMERCIAL AND INDUSTRIAL USES
Commercial establishments, such as hotels, restaurants and laundromats use propane in the same way a homeowner does: for heating and cooling air, heating water, cooking, refrigeration, drying clothes, barbecuing, and lighting. Many industrial sites rely on it for space heating, brazing, soldering, cutting, heat treating, annealing, vulcanizing, and many other uses. Petrochemical industries use propane in the manufacture of plastics.
Propane is a hydrocarbon (C3H8) and is sometimes referred to as liquefied petroleum gas, LP-Gas or LPG. Propane is produced from both natural gas processing and crude oil refining. It is nontoxic, colorless and virtually odorless. As with natural gas, an identifying odor is added so the gas can be readily detected.
PROPANE IS A SAFE FUEL
The propane industry has developed numerous methods to ensure the safe transport and use of propane:
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