As states and municipalities adopt more demanding emissions standards, the value of clean burning propane will become more important than ever. This new report proves propane is the best choice construction professionals can make to help businesses, schools, and other properties reduce their emissions — without sacrificing the performance they need for space and water heating, combined heat and power, and power generation.


From August 2016 through January 2017, the Propane Education & Research Council contracted the Gas Technology Institute (GTI) to execute a comparative emissions analysis study of targeted applications in key propane markets, including the residential market. The report studied three emissions types: full-fuel-cycle energy consumption, greenhouse gas emissions, and criteria pollutant emissions (NOX, SOX).


  • Sulfur Oxide: SOx
  • Nitrogen Oxide: NOx
  • Greenhouse Gases: GHG

Space Heating

Propane furnaces are a better, low-emissions choice than electric or heating oil. Beyond lowering emissions, propane produces a more comfortable heat in commercial applications than other power sources.

  • SOx
    • 68% less vs. electric
  • NOx
    • 19% less vs. electric
    • 75% less vs. heating oil
  • GHG
    • 34% less vs. electric
    • 10% less vs. heating oil

Micro-Combined Heat & Power

These systems, powered by an internal combustion engine or microturbine, produce heat and electric power at a lower emissions rate than electricity and diesel. By operating more efficiently, mCHP systems cut energy costs as well as greenhouse gas, SOx, and NOx emissions.

  • SOx
    • 90% less vs. electric
  • NOx
    • 13% less vs. natural gas
    • 50% less vs. electric
  • GHG
    • 15% less vs. diesel
    • 50% less vs. electric

Water Heating

For reduced emissions, both propane storage tank and tankless water heaters outperform electric and oil-fueled models. Buildings with high energy usage have a major opportunity to reduce harmful emissions with propane water heaters.

  • SOx
    • 87% less vs. electric
  • NOx
    • 80% less vs. oil
    • 18% less vs. electric
  • GHG
    • 24% less vs. oil
    • 40% less vs. electric

Power Generation

Besides reducing emissions, on-site propane generators provide the ultimate peace of mind for commercial buildings during and after severe weather and power outages. Propane can maintain essential lighting, heating, air conditioning, and refrigeration — must-haves for a variety of commercial buildings.

  • SOx
    • 72% less vs. electric
  • NOx
    • 31% less vs. natural gas
  • GHG
    • 17% less vs. natural gas

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