Feb 1, 2011 10:41 PM by John Romero
A little known plant in eastern El Paso County is helping keep your home warm as temperatures plummet below zero. On a normal day, Colorado Springs Utilities says their customers use about 100 million cubic feet of natural gas. But on a day like Tuesday, that number skyrockets. "Today is over 200 million cubic feet." explains Chris Thompson with Colorado Springs Utilities.
In order to keep rates and supply steady CSU turns to an alternative that reminds us of summer cookouts. "We can make a synthetic natural gas with propane and air to supplement what we can't purchase or what would be too expensive to purchase." explains Thompson.
It's a fairly simple process. They take normal liquid propane and vaporize it. "We mix that vaporized propane with compressed air and put it into the gas pipelines that are headed towards the city." says Thompson.
Colorado Springs Utilities says your furnace and hot water heater can't tell the difference between natural gas and the propane mix. This process also keeps your rates from going up when gas usage is high.