Natural Gas Law and Legal Definition

According to 33 USCS § 1502 (13), the term natural gas means “either natural gas unmixed, or any mixture of natural or artificial gas, including compressed or liquefied natural gas, natural gas liquids, liquefied petroleum gas, and condensate recovered from natural gas.”

According to 10 CFR 500.2 [Title 10 Energy; Chapter II Department of Energy; Subchapter E Alternate Fuels; Part 500 Definitions], the term natural gas means “any fuel consisting in whole or in part of natural gas, including components of natural gas such as methane and ethane; liquid petroleum gas; synthetic gas derived from petroleum or natural gas liquids; or any mixture of natural gas and synthetic gas. Natural gas does not include:

(1) Gaseous waste by-products or waste gas specifically designated as an alternate fuel in § 500.2 of these regulations;

(2) Natural gas which is commercially unmarketable, as defined in these rules;

(3) Natural gas produced by the user from a well, the maximum efficient production rate of which is less than 250 million Btu's per day. For purposes of paragraph (3) of this definition:

(i) Produced by the user means:

(A) All gas produced by the well, when such gas is delivered for use in the user's facility through a gas delivery, gathering, or transportation system which could not deliver such gas to any other user; or

(B) Only that amount which represents the user's net working (mineral) interest in the gas produced from such well, where such gas is delivered for use in the user's facility through a gas delivery, gathering, or transportation system which could deliver such gas to any other user.

(ii) Maximum efficient production rate (MEPR) means that rate at which production of natural gas may be sustained without damage to the reservoir or the rate which may be sustained without damage to the ultimate recovery of oil or gas through the well.

(4) Occluded methane in coal seams within the meaning of section 107(c)(3) of the Natural Gas Policy Act of 1978 (NGPA);

(5) The following gas from wells spudded prior to January 1, 1990:

(i) Gas produced from geopressurized brine, within the meaning of section 107(c)(2) of the NGPA;

(ii) Gas produced from Devonian shale, within the meaning of section 107(c)(4) of the NGPA;

(iii) Gas produced from tight sands, as designated by the FERC in accordance with section 107(c)(5) of the NGPA; and

(iv) Other gases designated by FERC as "high-cost natural gas" in accordance with section 107(c)(5) of the NGPA, except as specifically designated as "natural gas" by OFE;

(6) (i) Synthetic gas derived from coal or other alternate fuel, the heat content of which is less than 600 Btu's per cubic foot at 14.73 pounds per square inch (absolute) and 60[degrees] F; and

(ii) Commingled natural gas and synthetic gas derived from coal consumed as part of the necessary process of a major fuel burning installation used in the iron and steel industry, so long as the average annual Btu heat content of the commingled stream as consumed within a major fuel burning installation does not exceed 600 Btu's per cubic foot at 14.73 pounds per square inch (absolute) and 60[degrees] F;

(7) Mixtures of natural gas and synthetic gas derived from alternate fuels for which the person proposing to use the gas certifies to OFE that:

(i) He owns, or is entitled to receive at the point of manufacture, synthetic gas derived from alternate fuels;

(ii) He delivers, or arranges for the delivery of such synthetic gas to a pipeline which by transport or displacement is capable of delivering such synthetic gas, mixed with natural gas, to facilities owned by the user;

(iii) The total annual Btu content of the synthetic gas delivered to a pipeline is equal to or greater than the total annual Btu content of the natural gas delivered to the facilities owned by the user, plus the approximate total annual Btu content of any natural gas consumed or lost in transportation; and

(iv) All necessary permits, licenses, or approvals from appropriate Federal, State, and local agencies (including Indian tribes) have been obtained for construction and operation of the facilities for the manufacture of the synthetic gas involved, except that for purposes of the prohibition under section 201(2) of FUA against powerplants being constructed without the capability of using coal or another alternate fuel, only permits, licenses, and approvals for the construction of such synthetic gas facilities shall be required under this subparagraph, to be certified and documented; and

(8) A mixture of natural gas and an alternate fuel when such mixture is deliberately created for purposes of (i) Complying with a prohibition order issued pursuant to section 301(c) of the Act, or (ii) Qualifying for a fuel mixtures exemption under the Act, provided such exemption is granted.”