Natural Gas Offers Opportunity to Keep the Domestic Energy Economy Moving Forward Says 2017 AGA Chair

News Release January 18, 2017

NEW YORK, NY – Pierce Norton used the opportunity during his first official event as Chair of the Board of the American Gas Association (AGA) to highlight that the growth of natural gas in the U.S. has been transformative.

Norton spoke today to the New York Society of Security Analysts about how natural gas has been on the right track and is helping lead the way forward in today’s energy environment.

Norton, president and CEO of ONE Gas, Inc., a natural gas utility headquartered in Tulsa, Okla., said, “the United States has done a tremendous job of safely and efficiently capitalizing on the abundance of natural gas supply, and we are on track to continue moving forward with a natural gas strategy to meet the nation’s energy needs and goals.”

During the event, Norton also highlighted a report that the AGA will release later this month examining the diversity within the commercial segment of the natural gas market. Commercial customers have not seen natural gas prices this low in 40 years. Norton told analysts that low prices and continuous customer growth are sure signs that Americans want natural gas.

“Focusing on ways to upgrade, grow and invest in our infrastructure will enable more residential customers to access affordable energy, while allowing businesses to operate more profitably when energy costs are important to their bottom line,” the chair said.

Households that use natural gas for heating, cooking and clothes drying save an average of $874 per year compared with homes using electricity for those applications. Low, domestic natural gas prices have led to almost $50 billion in total annual savings for customers using these direct-use applications nationwide.

Norton will continue to build a platform and advocate for the domestic use of natural gas throughout 2017 by focusing on the industry’s ability to safely and reliably provide service to Americans across the country. The U.S. energy infrastructure is a cornerstone to growth for the economy and energy independence, and natural gas, more so than ever, is prepared to play a key role that strategy.

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.