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Archive for the tag “shale gas”

55 Dutch Professors Advise Against Shale Gas

55 Dutch professors signed a manifesto against application of shale gas in the Netherlands. From an environmental point of view there are only disadvantages and commercial advantages are questionable. According to the signatories shale is a hype, not interesting for Europe and certainly not for the Netherlands. To begin with, shale gas can only be found on much greater depths than in the US. Shale gas reserves in Europe are mainly located in Poland and France, 3.5 trillion m3 each (together 30% of US reserves). In contrast to the US, the soil is property of the state. In the US a farmer is approached with a financial incentive to give drillers access to his land. In Europe environmental regulations are much more strict than in the US, making shale gas exploitation less profitable. Shale gas exploration involves a highly toxic brew of benzene, mercury, arsenic and radon, that easily could end up in the ground water. For this reason France has forbidden shale gas and Poland seems to give up as well after disappointing results. For Holland it could mean that ecological damage will outweigh financial gains. The conclusion is that the Netherlands should concentrate on 16% target of renewable energy in 2020. That will be difficult enough.


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Shale Gas Revolution In Europe?

Some in Europe want to mimic the developments in the US and start to exploit shale gas in Europe as well. The result would be that like the US, Europe would adopt a kicking the industrial can further down the road attitude and avoid dealing with very tough questions now. The world is running out of fossil fuel anyway and exploiting shale gas merely means delay of execution. The only way that shale gas can be justified is by using every calorie contained in that gas for setting up a new renewable energy infrastructure. The goal of any sensible energy policy would be to have solar panels on every roof as quickly as possible. The German example of the Engergiewende is the way to go forward for the rest of Europe.

William Engdahl Doesn’t Believe in the Shale Gas Revolution

In 2007 William Engdahl, the historian of oil politics, surprisingly dismissed any idea of peak oil, and bought into the abiotic origin of oil and concluded that peak oil was a myth. He repeated this opinion only one year ago and attributes high oil prices not to scarcity (‘peak oil’) but speculation. With this background we are surprised that earlier this week Engdahl did dismiss the hype around shale gas in globalresearch. Like many others he stresses the toxic nature of the shale production process, but additionally he predicts that the shale gas story will be another bubble on the verge of popping. Engdahl shows that talk by president Obama of another 100 years of recoverable reserves is deceptive and that we should anticipate 11-23 years at current consumption rates at best.


Byron King On The Energy Sector In The Coming Years

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Shale Gas for Europe


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Global Natural Gas Reserves

The global natural gas market, conventional and shale, from an Indian perspective. Due to developments in the US, namely recent US unconventional oil and gas finds as well as a government reaching concensus about dramatically improved fuel efficiency of cars, fuel hope that India could benefit from US gas exports as well as reduced US demand for oil from the Middle East, leaving more for India, hopefully at lower prices. Whatever may be true of this, we were at least as interested in the map depicting the global natural gas reserves.


Cleaner Natural Gas Fracking Method Unveiled

A drilling project is planned whereby the fracking will take place with a thick propane gel instead of water/sand/chemicals to reduce pollution (LPG fracking). The gel returns to the surface as vapor and is recovered. Chemicals contained in the gel do not return to the surface. Additionally there is talk of “spectacular rise in well production”. Reports from the Cardium formation, which is west of Edmonton, displayed that LPG fracking results are “two to three times better” at increasing the flow of oil and gas in comparison to traditional methods.


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Shale Gas In The Netherlands

gaskaart_nl[source][pdf with detailed map]
The Netherlands is a natural gas country. Nearly all 7.1 million homes are connected to the natural gas grid, that to a large extent is being fed by a giant gas field near Slochteren, discovered July 22, 1959. Original total content was ca. 2.8 trillion m3 or 96 trillion ft3. By 2008 these reserves had decreased to 1.1 trillion m3. It will not be long before the impending end of Slochteren will make itself felt, energetical… and economical, as the original amount of gas represented 1.5 trillion euro against present day consumer prices. So what’s next… shale gas? Much is unclear about the potential of shale gas/oil in the Netherlands.

[] – August 19, 2011: shale gas reserves in The Netherlands range from a few hundred to 3000 billion m3. A lot of questions arose after the documentary Gasland was released. Frank de Boer, director of Cuadrilla Resources acknowledges that a lot went wrong in the US but that that is not bound to happen in the Netherlands.

[] – British company Cuadrilla wants to carry out probe drilling in Boxtel but meets fierce local resistance. The status as of September 2012 is that Cuadrilla still needs to wait for the results of a study by the Dutch government.

[] – The Netherlands has approximately 19 trillion cubic feet (540 billion m3) of technically recoverable shale gas reserves, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration.

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EU Says Shale Gas Needs Regulation, Not Ban

The European parliament wants to regulate, not ban shale gas. The prospect of large scale shale gas development in Europe is complicated by land ownership rules, higher population density and environmental concerns about the fracking process used to extract natural gas from shale. The EU clearly did not want to embrace shale gas as a critical instrument of solving future energy problems, but wasn’t prepared either to dismiss this form of energy. Praise for the EU attitude came both from fracking proponents as well as environmental organizations.


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High EROI Values for Shale Gas

Mike Aucott shows us that the EROI value of shale gas could be much higher than is assumed by many, namely in the range of 70-100+. He arrives at his conclusions by making use of CO2 emission data related to drilling for shale gas, which he uses as a measure for the amount of energy used to extract the shale gas. Energy necessary to produce the drilling hardware and related equipment is included as well. Aucott estimates the total energy cost for a shale gas well at 30 billion Btu. Another method of calculating the energy cost is to start from the financial cost of a well and translate that cost into energy cost, using the average amount of energy associated with a dollar of gross domestic product (GDP). Result: 35 billion Btu. A typical Marcellus well yields an estimated 2.9 billion cubic feet and thus Aucott arrives at EROI values of 70 or higher, which is extremely good. Aucott concludes that shale gas is not a bubble, but here to stay. And that gas is bound to overtake petroleum in the years to come. But at the same time he doubts that shale gas reserves are big enough to replace oil in the role it plays today. At the same time he points at dangers: gas leaks and its effect on global warming, surface water/drinking water well pollution by flowback fluids and/or gas itself, explosion hazards.



Shale Gas Perspectives – ASPO 2012

The reference to the IEA report “Are we entering a golden age of gas” is here:

Closely related an article in The Economist:

Shale Gas: European Perspective – ASPO 2012

[Official Youtube channel ASPO 2012]

[] Summary of the ASPO conference in Dutch.

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