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Geology and logistics issues in a densely populated area

Smith, Nigel. 2013 Geology and logistics issues in a densely populated area. In: Musialski, Cecile, (ed.) Shale gas in Europe : a multidisciplinary analysis with a focus on European specificities. Claeys & Casteels, 273-303.

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Abstract/Summary

The recent exploration of hydrocarbon source rocks in Europe and indeed in the rest of the world has looked to the US for guidance on the shale attri- butes, the new techniques, the effects of exploration on the environment and new regulations required for successful and safe exploitation. But this has been a steep learning curve even for major oil companies, which were slow to respond to the early success in the Barnett Shale. They have bought and taken over companies in order to gain expertise in the US basins and can now apply this to the rest of the world. It seems likely that exploration will only be as easy as in the US in those countries near the bottom of the population density list and those where investment in nuclear and renewable energy has been or is lower. The incentive of a high gas price and security of supply will however drive exploration in the higher density populated countries. Peter Voser, CEO of Royal Dutch Shell plc, has stated that ‘We underestimate what [shale gas] could do to the world in the next 10 to 20 years. It’s a big deal and necessary – globally.’ Gerhard Roiss, chief executive of Austrian oil and gas company OMV AG, is quoted as saying that ‘While Europeans worry about the potentially negative environmental aspects of exploiting shale gas, OMV has a simple message: Shale gas is a necessary part of a sustainable European energy mix. Not to embrace shale gas risks the future competitiveness of European industry’. Already cheap gas in the US is regenerating their energy intensive industries and providing chemical feedstocks. The US has also used shale gas to displace coal in their energy mix, thereby probably reducing their carbon dioxide emissions.

Item Type: Publication - Book Section
Additional Keywords: shale gas exploration costs regulations public
NORA Subject Terms: Earth Sciences
Date made live: 29 Apr 2016 14:24 +0 (UTC)
URI: http://nora.nerc.ac.uk/id/eprint/504601

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