US Industrial Gas Demand to Dip in 2020 as Manufacturing Activity, Oil & Gas Production Decline


Cleveland, OH, August 20, 2020 — US demand for industrial gases is forecast to see minimal annual declines in nominal terms through 2024, according to Industrial Gases: United States, a report recently released by Freedonia Focus Reports. Demand decreases due to the COVID-19 pandemic will combine with longer term losses led by the nitrogen segment; low oil and natural gas prices and shifts away from shallow well drilling where industrial gases are more likely to be used will reduce demand. Projected declines in refined petroleum products production will limit demand gains for hydrogen used in refineries. However, suppliers will benefit from expanding food and beverage, chemical, electronics, and metals manufacturing activity. Increasing oil and gas production will further stimulate gains.

Demand is expected to decline 11% in 2020 due to the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic. Closure of nonessential businesses between March and June and economic uncertainty has reduced manufacturing activity and business investment spending in industrial gases' end markets. Reduced economic activity also led to a decline in oil and natural gas production, constraining demand for industrial gases in unconventional recovery. Further demand drops will be forestalled by increased medical spending; while hospitals initially delayed elective surgeries, pent-up demand for these medical procedures and rising demand for oxygen for use by individuals on ventilators will prevent further declines.

These and other key insights are featured in Industrial Gases: United States. This report forecasts to 2020 and 2024 US industrial gas demand and shipments in nominal US dollars at the manufacturer level. Total demand is segmented by product in terms of:

  • nitrogen
  • hydrogen and argon
  • fluorocarbons
  • oxygen
  • carbon dioxide
  • acetylene
  • other gases such as helium, neon, and nitrous oxide

To illustrate historical trends, total demand, total shipments, the various segments, and trade are provided in annual series from 2009 to 2019.

Stated demand figures include the merchant, packaged, and captive markets for industrial gases. The merchant market refers to products delivered in bulk from supplier to customer via tanker truck or tube trailer, while packaged gases are distributed in cylinders or dewars. Captive consumption encompasses gases supplied by on-site plants and delivered through a pipeline. Re-exports of industrial gases are excluded from demand and trade figures.

More information about the report is available at: