Feeds

Lancs shale to yield '15 years' of gas for UK

200 trillion cubic feet of gas will net £6bn in tax

Beginner's guide to SSL certificates

The Cuadrilla Consortium has published its eagerly expected estimate of shale gas reserves in the North West of England. The group reckons it can extract 200 trillion cubic feet from sites near Preston and Liverpool – more than the current national estimates for Poland.

Assuming a 20 per cent recovery rate, that's enough to meet 15 years of UK demand from just 10 wells. The UK burned through 3.11 trillion cubic feet in 2009, according to the US Energy Information Administration. Current UK production is under 100 million cubic feet, so over 30 years, the North West could double the UK's gas production today.

A bonus would be £5bn to £6bn in UK tax revenue – and energy independence. Eighty per cent of EU member states' gas consumption is imported from Russia via the Ukraine.

There's plenty of room for skepticism – which is generally more about the speed with which the stuff can be extracted, rather than the economic value of the bonanza. The UK doesn't really do onshore gas, and the infrastructure is missing. The US energy market was dramatically transformed by shale, which now generates 20 per cent of its national consumption and has seen the gas price diverge from oil prices for the first time. But the US, with decades of onshore drilling, has scores of companies able to bid for crucial parts of the supply chain.

The UK, by contrast, has a defiantly "can't do" spirit. Environmentalists are the political establishment, and the UK's planning and regulatory regime are designed to make cheap fossil fuel innovation much much more expensive than it need be. ®

Internet Security Threat Report 2014

More from The Register

next story
GRAV WAVE DRAMA: 'Big Bang echo' may have been grit on the scanner – boffins
Exit Planet Dust on faster-than-light expansion of universe
SpaceX Dragon cargo truck flies 3D printer to ISS: Clawdown in 3, 2...
Craft berths at space station with supplies, experiments, toys
That glass of water you just drank? It was OLDER than the SUN
One MEELLION years older. Some of it anyway
Big dinosaur wowed females with its ENORMOUS HOOTER
That's right, Doris, I've got biggest snout in the prehistoric world
Japanese volcano eruption reportedly leaves 31 people presumed dead
Hopes fade of finding survivors on Mount Ontake
Relive the death of Earth over and over again in Extinction Game
Apocalypse now, and tomorrow, and the next day, and the day after that ...
prev story

Whitepapers

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk
A single remote control platform for user support is be key to providing an efficient helpdesk. Retain full control over the way in which screen and keystroke data is transmitted.
Intelligent flash storage arrays
Tegile Intelligent Storage Arrays with IntelliFlash helps IT boost storage utilization and effciency while delivering unmatched storage savings and performance.
Beginner's guide to SSL certificates
De-mystify the technology involved and give you the information you need to make the best decision when considering your online security options.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.
Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops
Balancing user privacy and privileged access, in accordance with compliance frameworks and legislation. Evaluating any potential remote control choice.