Tricky politics for UK shale
18 August 2014
The UK government is making shale gas development a national energy priority
FACED with declining oil and gas output from mature fields in the North Sea, European Union-wide mandates to cut carbon emissions, a rising energy import bill and growing concern at sharp increase in domestic utility prices, it seems logical that the UK government would encourage a shift towards developing and using domestic shale-gas resources.
And promising reserves estimates and increasing interest from major energy companies, from industry’s perspective, the prospects for development look good.
At the end of July, the Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC) released details of acreage on offer in the country’s 14th onshore licensing round. Companies have until 28 October to tender bids for blocks across some of the country’s most prospective shale measures.
However, the winners of these blocks will need more than expertise and cash. The biggest challenge they, and for that matter, the UK…