Future Supply of Natural Gas in the United States Exceeds 3,100 Trillion Cubic Feet, Potential Gas Committee Reports

News Release July 19, 2017

Washington, D.C. The Potential Gas Committee (Colorado School of Mines) in coordination with the American Gas Association (AGA), today, released a year-end 2016 biennial report: Potential Gas Supply of Natural Gas in the United States.The new Potential Gas Committee (PGC) assessment finds that the United States possesses a technically recoverable natural gas resource base of 2,817 trillion cubic feet (Tcf) yet to be discovered. This is the highest resource evaluation in the Committee’s 52-year history—a 12 percent increase from the previous high assessment from year-end 2014.

“Dr. Alexei Milkov, director of the Potential Gas Agency, has pointed to a record resource assessment exceeding 2,800 Tcf. With U.S. proved reserves of more than 300 Tcf, the future supply of natural gas exceeds 3,100 Tcf and continues to increase,” said Chris McGill, vice president, Energy Analysis & Standards at AGA. “With this abundant resource as a foundation, our nation will continue to be a recognized leader in clean energy and can rely on domestic natural gas for our energy needs for decades to come. We appreciate and welcome the sound science and ground-up geological work that the PGC applies in its development of this valuable report.”

The growing importance of shale gas in the U.S. is evidenced by the fact that the PGC’s mean total assessed shale gas resource of 1,797 Tcf for 2016 accounts for approximately 64 percent of the country’s total potential resources.

The future supply of domestic natural gas continues to grow due to the emergence and advancement of key technologies that unlock gas production from reservoirs such as shale formations. For the next decade and beyond, natural gas supplies are expected to support an increase in demand across all sectors. The record gas resources assessed by the PGC, in addition to robust domestic production levels and booked reserves, paints a picture of strong supply for natural gas in the U.S. for decades to come.

Since its founding in the early 1960s, the sole purpose of PGC has been to organize and train geoscientists, engineers and others for the timely preparation and dissemination of biennial assessments of the technically recoverable natural gas resource base of the United States.


The American Gas Association, founded in 1918, represents more than 200 local energy companies that deliver clean natural gas throughout the United States. There are more than 73 million residential, commercial and industrial natural gas customers in the U.S., of which 95 percent — more than 69 million customers — receive their gas from AGA members. Today, natural gas meets more than one-fourth of the United States' energy needs.