Following yesterday’s news that ministers are looking to relax trespassing laws in order to boost shale gas production in the UK, a report has suggested that around £33 billion would be needed to get implement the process.
It is thought that the funds would need to be invested into the UK’s shale wells between 2016 and 2032, which would include 4,000 horizontal wells. The money would also be used to promote hydraulic fracturing or fracking, drilling fluids, water waste management and also transportation and storage. The process has been used to fantastic effect in countries such as the USA and Canada, but opposition say that we quite simply don't have the spare land here in the UK; many sites would be extremely close to residential areas in the north of England.
Study Commissioned by BIS...
Commissioned by the onshore oil and gas industry and also contributed to by the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS), the study suggests that gas production levels from shale drilling could heat more than 20 million homes at its peak. It is also thought that this could create more than 6,000 jobs at the various fracking sites across the country, most if not all of these would be in the north.
Europe has been described as a “significant, yet untapped shale market” and despite huge opposition from environmental protesters and left wing politicians such as Caroline Lucas, it is thought that politicians will look to boost the production of shale gas here in the UK. Energy firms seemingly have a fantastic opportunity to be at the forefront of a brand new energy market and utilise their equipment and skills.
Gas Imports to be Reduced to 27%...
The reason that fracking and shale gas drilling are being pushed so emphatically, is that Europe currently imports 89% of its annual gas demand. Through the successful implementation of shale gas drilling in the UK and across Europe, the hope is that this figure could be driven as low as 27% by 2035. Indeed, the concerns over the gas supply in Russia and Ukraine as their political debacle rages on, have all but confirmed the need for Western Europe to become more independent when it comes to its energy.
Business and Energy Minister Michael Fallon has urged Lancashire and Lowestoft based companies to “get ready for shale” and voiced his pleasure at the findings of the recent shale gas report. The success seen across the Atlantic should encourage us to emulate their efforts, even despite the apparent lack of available land for fracking to take place without effecting the daily lives of nearby residents.
Work With Local Communities...
An event is currently taking place in Blackpool, where businesses interested in shale gas production can put their heads together and devise the most prudent plan. One thing which is clear, is that there will be a lot of work to come from these companies with local communities to make sure no one is adversely affected. The economic benefits of fracking and shale gas drilling are plain for all to see, although people living in Lancashire and near other fracking sites are unlikely to care too much about this.
Love Energy Savings will be on hand with all the updates you need regarding the fracking debate. In the meantime, you can read our ultimate guide or take a look through our ever-busy energy news centre to read more about the commercial and domestic energy industry.