TABLE-Estimates of British shale gas production by 2020s
LONDON, July 19 (Reuters) - Energy experts say it is difficult to estimate how much shale gas could be developed commercially in Britain, and their estimates differ widely for the next decade. The British government unveiled tax breaks on Friday to drive investment in shale gas production. Britain, one of Europe's largest gas consumers, hopes to follow the United States by exploiting shale gas to cut its reliance on imports, which have surpassed domestic North Sea production and are set to increase further unless new sources are found. Reuters calculations show that if 8-10 billion cubic metres a year (bcm/yr) of shale gas production is achieved by the mid-2020s, it would account for around 10 percent of expected gas demand and be worth $3-4 billion based on average spot gas prices in Britain. To be completely non-dependent on gas imports, however, Britain would have to produce 80 bcm/yr in 2020-2030, said John Williams, senior principal at Poyry Management Consulting. Below follows a table outlining some estimates in bcm/yr.
COMPANY/ANALYST ESTIMATE TIMELINE National Grid Total unconventional gas 2022-2029
sources, including shale, could produce 2-4 bcm/yr
Oxford Institute 8 bcm/yr (requiring 300 new after 10 years
for Energy Studies shale wells a year)
Poyry 12 bcm/yr 2021 perhaps 20-35 bcm/yr by 2035
(Reporting by Nina Chestney; editing by Jane Baird)