The year 2020 has brought many challenges, and we are surrounded by heroes who are rising to the occasion to not only protect our collective health and safety, but also to make our lives more manageable during the hardships presented by a global pandemic and stay-at-home orders.
And in ways both traditional and novel, propane is helping to enhance our daily lives during an especially unique summer.
We know that propane is used to make isopropanol, a key ingredient in many CDC-recommended hand sanitizers. It is also the raw material used to make polypropylene, which is widely used in many medical applications and to make protective gear such as face shields, masks, surgical gowns and gloves.
There are also many other positive uses of propane that enhance our everyday lives. Throughout the summer months, we use propane to heat our pools, repel mosquitoes, and fire up our grills, generators and fire pits. Propane tankless water heaters can offer an unlimited supply of flowing hot water and lower bills by about 30% compared to electric models. Propane is also becoming more widely used for yard equipment like lawnmowers, trimmers and blowers.
Propane happens to be the world’s third-most-common transportation fuel, behind gasoline and diesel. The popularity of propane makes sense, since it is abundantly available right in our backyard, is affordable, and is one of the cleanest fuel sources available today.
We’re fortunate to have an abundant supply of propane from the Marcellus Shale region in southwestern Pennsylvania, with pipelines that reliably provide its transportation. The Mariner East pipeline system helps keep propane affordable by providing local off-takes along its route to the Marcus Hook Industrial Complex in southeast Pennsylvania, where it is further distributed to additional local and regional markets. From there, propane is also exported overseas, where it used to make many hundreds of products that ultimately protect our health and hygiene, as mentioned above.
Domestic propane makes it easier to continue to stay home with our families and to spend time outdoors when safely gathering with friends. It’s a good thing our propane supply isn’t going anywhere soon — in fact, more and more people are reaping the financial and environmental benefits of propane.