UNCTAD special report on shale gas

The United Nations Conference on Trade and Development issued today a special report on shale gas :

http://unctad.org/en/PublicationsLibrary/suc2017d10_en.pdf

"Shale gas is the focus of the current edition of the Commodities at a Glance series. Conflicting views have emerged concerning, for example, its potential contributions to the economy, its impact on job creation and its negative effects on the environment.

The main challenge of this report has been to offer a dispassionate perspective on these aspects in order to make informed decisions about issues related to shale gas activities.

In this regard, important developments have occurred in the United States of America since the mid-2000s. This period has been mainly referred to as the “shale gas boom or revolution” and the growth of natural gas production in the United States through shale gas extraction has led to a sharp drop in domestic natural gas prices.

 

At the same time, in Europe, some countries have decided to ban the production of shale oil and shale gas in their territories or to prohibit the use of its main production technique, namely hydraulic fracturing.

In view of these developments, it is relevant to analyse to what extent shale gas can contribute to the future of the energy landscape and highlight the challenges this may involve.

The aim of this report is to set out the facts, analyse them and draw conclusions independently of the passion that is generally associated with discussions on this issue. "

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I was under the impression that there was some 500 years' supply of oil locked inside Colorado rock formations.  Presumably at this point that remains uneconomic to extract.  Does anyone have more details on that reservoir, and who is sitting on the extraction rights?

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3 hours ago, dowmike said:

and from the Report (link above):  [looks like a ton of oil down there in them thar rocks!]

Although not all of the oil in Shale Country will be recoverable, judicious estimates suggest that 800 billion barrels – more than triple Saudi Arabia’s proven reserves, enough to meet current US demand for over a century – might ultimately be extracted.2

This 800-billion-barrel figure was put forward as a reasonable estimate by James Bartis, a widely recognized expert on the subject, in an influential report he wrote for the Rand Corporation in 2005. As with all estimates of oil reserves, and especially with those as tricky as oil shale, not everyone agrees. Some more recent estimates suggest that the amount of recoverable oil is upwards of 1.5 trillion barrels, and that the total resource represents 5 or even 8 times more than Saudi Arabia’s reserves. But the scope of the resource is, beyond question, already so large that a 200-billion-barrel bump makes little difference for broad social, economic, and environmental considerations addressed in this report.3

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