UK shale gas resources may be significantly higher than previously thought.
The BBC says IGas, one of the energy firms with a licence to extract shale gas, will tell investors there may be up to 170 trillion cubic feet of gas in the areas it is licensed to explore in northern England.
Shale gas is extracted by fracking – pumping water and sand at high pressure into rock to release gas within it. Critics say it may cause earth tremors and want investment in green energy.
Fracking has revolutionised the US energy market and the energy industry has hopes for a similar boom in shale gas in the UK. IGas has a licence to cover an area of 300 sq miles across Cheshire.
According to the BBC, IGas had previously said it had about nine trillion cubic feet of shale gas. It now estimates that the volume of “gas initially in place” could range from 15.1 trillion cubic feet to 172.3 trillion cubic feet – nearly 20 times more. The UK’s annual gas consumption is currently about 3 trillion cubic feet.
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