What a difference 90 years can make!
Birth of the GPA
At the beginning of the 20th century, refiners discovered that casinghead gas or natural gasoline could be refined and blended into an improved gasoline product. This was the first truly profitable use of natural gas liquids (NGLs) and was commercialized as the demand for gasoline was on the rise to fuel the ever-increasing numbers of automobiles…and, a few years later, World War I.
With the NGL-based product being abundant and inexpensive, it soon found its way onto rail cars and other means of pressure vessel transportation. During the heat of summer, these pressure vessels would leak, rupture, and, at times, cause catastrophic accidents. NGLs' value was understood, but the characteristics of the products were not. Out of this need, the Gas Processors Association (GPA) was born, first developing vapor pressure limits and other specifications for natural gasolines, and later developing and growing the fledgling gas processing industry into what we know today. Member companies represent approximately 92% of all natural gas liquids produced in the United States and operate approximately 190,000 miles of domestic gas gathering lines.
Source: "What a difference 90 years can make!" – Technical Director Kenny Wheat, GPA eBrief, July 2011
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