Technically and readily exploitable shale gas resources double the world’s reserves of natural gas, according to a report for the US government.1
It found 32 countries have “vast” reserves, put at an equivalent of 160,000 million tonnes of oil. The world has about 2.4 times more than that in technically recoverable conventional reserves.
The UK’s resource is put at 480mtoe, double its remaining conventional reserves of natural gas.
Meanwhile, US academics have claimed that shale gas may be worse for climate change than coal, due to fugitive emissions of methane related to the hydraulic fracturing it requires.2 But best available techniques could cut these emissions.