Thursday, 14 October 2010

Shale Gas Will Rock the World

There's an energy revolution brewing right under our feet. Over the past
decade, a wave of drilling around the world has uncovered giant supplies of
natural gas in shale rock. By some estimates, there's 1,000 trillion cubic
feet recoverable in North America alone-enough to supply the nation's
natural-gas needs for the next 45 years. Europe may have nearly 200 trillion
cubic feet of its own.

We've always known the potential of shale; we just didn't have the
technology to get to it at a low enough cost. Now new techniques have driven
down the price tag-and set the stage for shale gas to become what will be
the game-changing resource of the decade.

I have been studying the energy markets for 30 years, and I am convinced
that shale gas will revolutionize the industry-and change the world-in the
coming decades. It will prevent the rise of any new cartels. It will alter
geopolitics. And it will slow the transition to renewable energy.

To understand why, you have to consider that even before the shale
discoveries, natural gas was destined to play a big role in our future. As
environmental concerns have grown, nations have leaned more heavily on the
fuel, which gives off just half the carbon dioxide of coal. But the rise of
gas power seemed likely to doom the world's consumers to a repeat of OPEC,
with gas producers like Russia, Iran and Venezuela coming together in a
cartel and dictating terms to the rest of the world.

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