Virginia Natural Gas’s aim, as it wrote in its request to the state regulator, was to “further support the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions.” As part of its “Sustainable Gas Program,” the Virginia-based private utility wanted to purchase what it calls “Next Generation Natural Gas.” But it needed the state’s blessing in order to pass on to customers a 15 percent premium for buying this specially certified gas. 

The utility received that approval — but only for a five percent premium — in November 2022. Less than six months later, Virginia Natural Gas boasted that it was supplying “NextGen Gas,” or gas “produced with lower greenhouse gas emissions,” to satisfy up to half of the energy demands of its 300,000 customers.

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