Is Natural Gas Distribution a Good Career Path?
Updated November 18, 2023
- Introduction to the Natural Gas Industry
- Is Natural Gas Distribution a Good Career Path?
- Natural Gas Distribution Jobs – What Careers Are in the Natural Gas Industry?
- What Are the Advantages of Working in Natural Gas Distribution Jobs?
- What Are the Disadvantages of Working in the Natural Gas Industry?
- Frequently Asked Questions
- Final Thoughts
Working in natural gas distribution offers many perks, including competitive salaries, attractive employee benefits packages and excellent opportunities for career progression.
If you are looking for a career path that will provide financial stability, it’s worth exploring job opportunities in the natural gas distribution industry.
Roles are available in various areas, including construction, engineering, maintenance and business operations.
Natural gas is a major fuel source and a critical energy sector service.
Natural gas is used to power everything from commercial buildings and domestic properties to vehicles and machinery; therefore, the natural gas industry is an indispensable service to consumers worldwide. Without it, the modern world would not be able to function.
The natural gas industry is responsible for the management of high-pressure systems. These systems are used to transmit gas from regional distribution networks, and highly skilled workers are required to manage and maintain this gas supply safely.
There are various opportunities for employment in the natural gas industry.
Understanding the different options is the best way to find a career path that suits your strengths, weaknesses and preferences.
This article explores the different job opportunities available in the natural gas industry, highlights the potential advantages and disadvantages of working within these roles, and offers ideas on how to pursue job opportunities in the natural gas industry.
Keeping the gas flowing is not always straightforward. Many job roles in the natural gas industry require high levels of specialist knowledge and skills, which makes it difficult for the work to be outsourced or automated.
With this in mind, there are many well-paid, long-term employment opportunities in the natural gas distribution industry, which makes it appealing for anyone looking for a steady career path that offers financial stability.
People who work in the field of natural gas distribution are responsible for the safe and efficient delivery of natural gas to various locations.
This includes being responsible for duties relating to the overall maintenance of the infrastructure and operating pipelines.
Therefore, working in the natural gas distribution industry offers many challenging job roles.
Working in the industry means you can pursue rewarding career opportunities and follow a career path that allows you to make a meaningful contribution to society.
Working in the natural gas industry offers many job opportunities, each requiring different qualifications and skills.
If you are employed in the transport department, you will be expected to manage the safe storage and delivery of gas. In contrast, working in the customer satisfaction department will require you to communicate with customers to resolve issues and complaints.
If you want to work in a technical role, consider applying for an engineering, pipe fitting or plumbing vacancy.
The minimum requirements for employees in the natural gas distribution industry vary between job roles.
If you are not sure whether you have the correct qualifications or level of experience, you will need to check with the employer. However, for most roles, you must at least possess a high school diploma or an equivalent qualification.
Depending on the position you are applying for, you might be required to study for additional certifications or degrees.
Employers within the natural gas distribution industry often hire candidates who exhibit high-level problem-solving and communication skills and possess a notable safety record.
Some employers offer apprenticeship opportunities for entry-level roles in the natural gas industry.
An entry-level position can be one of the best ways to get into natural gas distribution, as it means you can learn “on the job” and earn money simultaneously, as well as receive support to study for the associated qualifications needed to move up the career ladder.
If you would prefer to study before applying for a job, you can enroll on a vocational school certificate or college degree program. Some education establishments offer specialist programs in gas metering and natural gas distribution.
Here is an overview of some of the career paths available in the natural gas industry:
Average salary: $76,885
Drillers are involved in the excavation of underground wells. They supervise other crew members and help run the rig.
Drillers must also keep track of gas levels, pressure build-ups and other safety issues.
To work as a driller, you must have good mechanical skills, a knowledge of well pressure systems and drilling fluids, and the ability to safely maintain equipment in line with the relevant legislation.
Average salary: $57,716
Pipefitters and plumbers play a critical role in installing, repairing and maintaining the piping systems for residential and commercial applications. They will be expected to read blueprints and design the piping system to transport gasses safely.
Pipefitters and plumbers must also maintain and repair the pipes as necessary to ensure they are safe and performing to their full potential.
For this role, you will need to have experience in construction, plumbing or pipefitting and good levels of manual dexterity. You will also need to possess an understanding of hydraulics, physics and pneumatics and be able to work effectively alongside the construction team.
Average salary: $72,091
Stationary engineers and boiler operators have responsibility for operating and maintaining high-pressure gas systems and equipment. Their duties include starting up, regulating, repairing and shutting down equipment.
Stationary engineers and boiler operators must also monitor computerized controls, gauges and meters to ensure everything operates safely and in line with pre-established limits.
Welders, Cutters and Welder Fitters – Installation and Maintenance of Natural Gas Distribution Systems
Average salary: $56,947
Welders, cutters and welder fitters install and maintain natural gas distribution systems. They use hand-welding and flame-cutting techniques and machinery to weld, fill holes and join components on metal objects.
To work as a welder, you must study and pass an apprenticeship program.
Pipelayers, Plumbers, Pipefitters, and Steamfitters – Handle All Aspects of Natural Gas Delivery and Installation
Average Pipelayer salary: $46,588
Pipelayers are skilled workers responsible for laying pipes, including drains, storm sewers, sanitary sewers, and water mains. They may be required to level ditches and trenches, seal joints or put pipes into the right position.
Average salary: $44,583
Forklift drivers or operators are responsible for moving heavy objects and equipment.
Average salary: $135,350 – rising to $250,900 for an Expert Reservoir Engineer
Reservoir engineers are responsible for developing, optimizing and maintaining gas reservoirs. This is also one of the best paying jobs in natural gas distribution.
Working in the natural gas distribution industry means you will be contributing to a service that affects consumers worldwide.
Since the service is indispensable, there is a huge demand for skilled individuals, and the industry provides job opportunities in various areas, including construction, engineering, maintenance and general operations.
Many roles require a high level of specialist knowledge or qualifications, so it is unlikely that job roles in the natural gas distribution industry will be adversely affected by automation or outsourcing in the future.
In summary, the natural gas distribution industry is a relatively stable career path with many long-term job opportunities.
Jobs in the natural gas industry offer competitive salary packages, so working in the industry will likely appeal to anyone seeking financial stability.
Many employers offer extra benefits such as health insurance, paid time off and retirement savings.
However, checking the details of any perks or benefits with individual employers is important.
If you want a career path where you will have the chance to progress, the natural gas distribution industry could be a great fit.
Natural gas is an ever-evolving industry that relies on keeping up to date with the latest technology developments to improve its procedures for excavation and distribution.
This environment lends itself well to people who want to enjoy career advancement opportunities and climb the career ladder.
As you gain more experience, you might be recognized as a specialist in your area or take on responsibility for supervising junior members of the team.
As with any industry, there are a few points to consider before applying for a role in the natural gas industry.
Many roles in the natural gas distribution industry are physically challenging, so you must maintain a particular fitness, strength and endurance level.
In some roles, you will work with heavy plants and machinery, moving large objects or on your feet for long periods.
If you are considering applying for roles in the natural gas distribution industry, it is important to consider whether you have the required physical abilities and overall health to succeed.
You will also be expected to pass an occupational health fitness assessment for many roles.
You may be exposed to harsh chemicals or gas when working in the natural gas industry.
Although employers are expected to implement strict safety protocols and policies to protect their employees and prevent fires, injuries and accidents, this is still a risk you must be aware of before pursuing this career path.
If your application succeeds, you must comply with industry standards and safety measures such as using personal protective equipment or wearing protective clothing such as goggles, overalls and gloves.
If you want to work in natural gas distribution, you must know about the risks of environmental pollution by excavating natural gas.
Furthermore, you should be mindful of things like deforestation and river pollution, which can happen through the disposal of waste substances generated by natural gas excavation.
In most cases, you will work in non-residential areas to reduce the risk of exposing others to gas or chemicals.
Still, the pollution risk is a tangible environmental threat that you must be mindful of.
Working in natural gas distribution is a good career path with many benefits. These include competitive salaries, excellent opportunities for career progression and job security.
Without natural gas, the modern world would be unable to function.
If you work in the natural gas distribution industry, you will be helping to deliver a vital service to people all over the world.
There are many well-paid jobs in natural gas distribution.
Some of the best-paid jobs in the natural gas distribution industry include drilling contractor, project engineer and reservoir engineer.
If you want to earn a six-figure salary, this is achievable through many natural gas distribution roles.
According to IBISWorld, around 118,584 people are directly employed in the US natural gas distribution industry as of 2024.
Getting a job in natural gas can be difficult if you do not have the required experience and qualifications.
Many roles in the natural gas industry require highly skilled individuals; therefore, if you meet the job role requirements, you will probably be shortlisted for a job interview.
If you are looking for entry-level jobs, you may wish to apply for an apprenticeship or vocational role, as this is the best way to gain the experience you will need to climb the industry’s career ladder.
The requirements to get a job in natural gas distribution vary between job roles. However, you must have a high school diploma (or equivalent qualification) for most job roles.
You will need to check the role profile or job description for the position you wish to apply for to determine the minimum qualifications and experience requirements.
According to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, the annual mean wage for employees in the natural gas distribution field is $96,470.
To stand the best chance of getting a job in natural gas distribution, you must study a relevant subject such as geology, mathematics, engineering or physics.
The fastest way to find employment in the natural gas distribution industry is to apply for an apprenticeship role that allows you to study on the job, gain a qualification and earn a competitive salary at the same time.
Working for an integrated oil company can be lucrative.
Integrated oil is a global industry, so you will have opportunities to work in many locations.
Job roles in integrated oil can be challenging. Still, it is a good career path if you thrive in a competitive working environment.
The world relies on natural gas to function, so the natural gas industry is one of the best industries to work in if you are looking for job stability, steady career development and attractive financial compensation.
The industry offers a variety of interesting career paths and job opportunities, many of which attract competitive salaries and employee benefits packages.