Poland Kills Any Shale Gas Hopes

From the CIRE.PL newsletter today (autotranslated):

"As noted by the "Official Legal Newspaper", for the last 12 months the number of licenses for shale gas exploration has fallen by over 30 percent.from 105 to 68, primarily due to the withdrawal of foreign investors.

"... citing figures from the Ministry of Environment, 
15 groups of companies now have licenses shale companies, while a year ago concessionaires were granted to  21 companies. Those who withdrew were mainly foreign investors who have experience in this field. Recently resigned, among others, are ENI, ExxonMobil, Total, Canadian Oil and Marathon. According to the daily, stagnation also is causing the falling pace of work. During the summer months in Poland were carried out just three new exploratory wells, and in the period January - August was a total of 13 wells. In early September drilling for shale gas concessions in general were not conducted.

"As the "DGP", the more experienced companies withdraw from the Polish, the search will be longer and more tedious, because 
approx. 300 wells are needed to estimate the resources of Polish shale gas is . If this kept pace with recent years, it would take until 2030., While the Ministry of Environment is planning to drill to 2021. From 309 to 333 exploration wells (123 to 128 of them will be done for sure, and another 181-210 - optional, depending on the capabilities and performance of its work by the investors)." 
Also in the news, "After the company 3Legs Resources decided to withdraw from the exploration of shale gas deposits in the Polish, the company announced the launch of the liquidation procedure."  

Yet just days ago, the Polish Government included a scenario of extensive shale gas development in its discussion of 2050 energy plans. Shale gas development is geologically more difficult here than in the United States, but the final nail in the coffin has been the government's rushing to the front of the line to try to get revenue out of the sector before it had even proved to be commercially viable.

My hats off to the guys still brave enough to keep plugging away at shale gas in Poland, but I think it is clear that shale gas will not be a major source of energy in Poland at any time on the horizon. This will not stop Polish politicians from repeating this mantra in the elections in 2015, lacking any seriously aggressive press that would question their frequent departures from reality.*


*  My favorite energy ditty is then Primer Minister Tusk saying he did not like wind energy and renewables because they were too costly, while he favored new coal plants and nuclear plants [both of which are more expensive than wind energy right now!]. 


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