Shale gas search worth $1 billion in next two years

Around $1 billion worth of shale gas exploration is planned for Australia during the next two years according to an industry analyst.

Morgan Stanley chief energy analyst Stuart Baker reportedly said three of four LNG plants being built at Gladstone in Queensland would need to produce more gas during their lifespans than had been identified in eastern Australia.

“At some point there will need to be a lot more gas discovered,” Baker said, according to The Australian.

“Once these LNG export plants are built they have engineering lifespans of 40 years.

“The existing conventional and coal seam gas reserves that we have identified are enough to supply about 20 years when we include the domestic market.”

The boost in exploration activity is due to improved drilling technology and higher prices that have made previously unreachable and uneconomic shale gas reserves open to exploitation, potentially doubling previous estimates.

The number of projects has doubled from nine months ago, according to The Australian.

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