a CHEMICAL giant based in Runcorn is set to undertake shale gas exploration activities in Scotland.
Ineos – which has its UK group headquarters in Weston Point – has obtained a 51% share in a joint Petroleum Exploration And Development Licence (PEDL) which covers 329 sq kms of Scotland’s Midland Valley.
The area includes the firm’s Grangemouth refining and petrochemical complex and the area around it where infrastructure is being built to import shale gas ethane from the USA.
Chief operating officer of Ineos Upstream Gary Haywood said: “This is a logical next step for Ineos and we are very excited about it.
“We are very pleased to have agreed the purchase of 51% of the shale section of the PEDL 133 licence.
“Over the last year Ineos Upstream has been drawing together a team of experts in the sector, including a number of leading shale exploration and development specialists from the US. This expertise gives us the perfect platform to move into onshore exploration.”
The Upstream part of Ineos is the company’s oil and gas exploration and production business and bought the 51% share from BG Group, with the remaining 49% of the shale section licence being owned by exploration company, Dart Energy.
Mr Haywood added: “We are one of very few businesses that can use shale gas as both a fuel and a petrochemical feedstock. With our large UK asset base, our existing capabilities in operating oil and gas facilities and our exemplary safety and environmental record, Ineos is well placed to become a major player in the UK onshore gas production sector.”