If you are looking for a way to power your home or business during an outage, a generator can be a lifesaver. However, it’s important to choose the best one for your needs.
Gas generators are cleaner than diesel ones, so they’re an excellent choice if you want to lower your emissions and help the environment. But you need to be sure you’re getting a model that meets EPA standards.
Natural gas is a fossil fuel that is derived from the decomposition of organic matter in pockets beneath the Earth’s surface. It contains a variety of gases including methane, carbon dioxide, hydrogen sulfide and nitrogen.
Many generators use natural gas to power their units. This is a cleaner alternative to diesel and offers a lower carbon footprint and greater efficiency when it comes to energy production.
Natural gas generator emissions are not as high as those produced by diesel generators and are more efficient at operating within strict emission regulations. It is also less expensive than other non-renewable fuels.
Carbon dioxide (CO2) is the fourth most abundant gas in the Earth’s atmosphere. It is a colorless, odorless gas that is produced naturally and by human activity, including the burning of fossil fuels like coal and oil to generate electricity.
CO2 is a greenhouse gas, which means it absorbs and retains heat from the sun. This makes it important for life on Earth.
It is also a part of a natural cycle called the carbon cycle, which adds and removes CO2 from the atmosphere by volcanic activity, the breath of animals and plant decay.
The amount of carbon dioxide in the air has risen significantly since the industrial revolution, which is raising global temperature. This is because humans are causing the carbon cycle to overshoot what is naturally removed in a year.
Carbon monoxide is a colorless, odorless gas that can poison you if it comes into contact with your skin. It is produced when fuels such as gasoline, kerosene, oil or wood are burned incompletely.
The gas is also released by other equipment and appliances that burn fuel. This includes generators, furnaces, water heaters, stoves, lanterns, and fireplaces.
People can become seriously ill or die from CO poisoning if it builds up in their bodies. It is especially dangerous for children and the elderly.
Portable gas generators emit a substantial amount of carbon monoxide and have been linked to deaths in the home. The CPSC has urged the industry to adopt a safer design that shuts off the engine when high levels of the gas are detected.
The combustion of hydrocarbon fuels releases carbon dioxide (CO2), a greenhouse gas. It also generates nitrogen oxides and nitric oxide, gases that contribute to ozone reactivity and contribute to smog formation.
The energy density and CO2-footprint of a fuel depends on the length of its molecular chains and the number of carbon atoms to each hydrogen atom. The higher the ratio of carbon to hydrogen, the greater the quantifiable amount of energy that can be extracted from a given quantity of fuel.
Diesel, for example, has a much higher carbon-to-hydrocarbon ratio than gas fossil fuels like natural gas and coal. This means that diesel releases a much larger amount of heat-trapping CO2 into the atmosphere when burned than do low-density hydrocarbon fuels like methane.
The particulate matter emitted from gas generator emissions is a mixture of solid particles and liquid droplets. Some are large enough to be seen with the naked eye, while others are so small they are difficult to see using an electron microscope.
Particulate matter comes from many different sources, including power plants and industries, cars, trucks and buses, construction sites, farms and smokestacks. Some are formed directly when fuels burn, while others are formed indirectly as a result of the chemical changes of gases from burning fuels.
The health effects of PM depend on the size of the particles, which vary according to their aerodynamic diameters and their concentrations in the air (World Health Organization, 2013). Inhalable coarse particles less than 10 micrometers in diameter are called PM10; fine inhalable particles less than 2.5 micrometers in diameter are called PM2.5.