The world’s largest natural gas producers are pouring tens of billions of US dollars into a global energy boom.
The companies, mostly from the US and Europe, are investing in new plants, including one in India that could pump as much as 930 billion cubic feet (bcf) of gas per year.
The world’s gas needs are growing at an annual rate of 5% and are projected to rise further in the coming years, the International Energy Agency said on Monday.
While most of the money will go to projects to expand infrastructure, it is also being spent to buy natural gas that could be stored for export.
The IEA says more than half of the $6.5 billion spent by global gas producers last year was for infrastructure projects.
Some projects, including the one in the US state of Pennsylvania, are being paid for by a fund that was established in 2014.
The IEA said it is the largest single fund ever established to help finance the construction of gas storage facilities.
“The IAEA’s latest energy outlook for 2020 shows that natural gas storage is the future of energy storage,” the agency said in a statement.
“It also shows that the need for such storage is growing.”
Gas storage projects will help address energy demand and greenhouse gas emissions.
“The IEO also said it expects to see a rise in the amount of gas being stored, especially in the developing world.