Energy & Infrastructure

Building resilience to future pandemics

Tom Droege

Reliable power in hospitals and clinics is critical to preventing, fighting and recovering from COVID-19 and building resilience to future pandemics. Virtually all diagnostic tests for active COVID-19 infections currently require electricity according to a recent post by Brookings Institute looking at energy disparity around the globe.

Clinics must have reliable electricity to run ventilators or oxygen masks. Electricity powers sanitization and cleaning equipment as well as air filtration and, in some places, pumped clean water. And when it comes to vaccines, those must stay refrigerated until they are administered.

While remote clinics in some parts of Africa and Asia are best suited for “off grid” solutions for electric power generation, the abundant supplies of natural gas that the United States enjoys can offer environmental and health benefits to much of the world that currently generates electricity by burning coal.

Natural gas is key to generating electricity in large volumes for power grids. It is also a great partner with renewables because a reliable power grid (made possible by natural gas) supports investments in intermittent renewables like wind and solar viable.

The United States sends natural gas overseas to countries through a process called liquefaction. At terminals on the coast natural gas is chilled to liquid form known as liquefied natural gas or LNG. This LNG is then transported on ocean-going vessels. Once it reaches its destination it is returned to gas form so it can be shipped by pipeline to end users. As the top provider of natural gas to LNG export facilities in the United States, Williams is proud to be part of this global energy solution. LNG shipments allow the environmental benefits of natural gas to be shared around the world, helping reduce global greenhouse gas emissions while supporting economic growth.