A Quick Look at the USEIA's World Shale Gas Resources Report
The US EIA has released a 350 page report (51 MB PDF Download) assessing the world shale gas resources (for 32 selected nations). While the huge US shale gas bonanza is well known, the wealth of shale gas in the rest of the world was not as widely known prior to the publishing of this report.
As the technology and expertise for developing this resource spreads out from North America to Europe, Asia, South America, and Oceania, we can expect the global energy equation to change drastically -- just as it has changed recently within the US and Canada.
The location of these resources -- inside nations not typically known for their vast hydrocarbon deposits -- is a huge reason why shale gas will shake the established energy order to its foundations.
The initial estimate of technically recoverable shale gas resources in the 32 countries examined is 5,760 trillioncubic feet, as shown in Table 1. Adding the U.S. estimate of the shale gas technically recoverable resources of 862 trillion cubic feet results in a total shale resource base estimate of 6,622 trillion cubic feet for the United States and the other 32 countries assessed. To put this shale gas resource estimate in some perspective, world proven reserves5of natural gas as of January 1, 2010 are about 6,609 trillion cubic feet,6 and world technically recoverable gas resources are roughly 16,000 trillion cubic feet,7largely excluding shale gas. Thus, adding the identified shale gas resources to other gas resources increases total world technically recoverable gas resources by over 40 percent to 22,600 trillion cubic feet. _USEIA Report Summary
Shale Gas' WOW! Moment
The Shale Gas Energy Revolution
Global Shale Gas Boosts Total Natural Gas Resources by 40% !
Full USEIA 51 MB PDF Report Download
The take-home message is that humans have barely scratched the surface of global hydrocarbon resources. By the time they begin to scratch the surface, they should be ready to move on to advanced safe fission and fusion, as well as a number of other energy sources considered impractical at this time.
Table 1. Estimated shale gas technically recoverable resources for select basins in 32 countries, compared to existing reported reserves, production and consumption during 2009
|2009 Natural Gas Market1 |
(tillion cubic feet, dry basis)
|Proved Natural Gas Reserves2 |
(trillion cubic feet)
|Technically Recoverable Shale Gas Resources |
(trillion cubic feet)
|Total of above areas||53.1||55.0||(3%)||1,001||6,622|
1Dry production and consumption: EIA, International Energy Statistics, as of March 8, 2011.
2 Proved gas reserves: Oil and Gas Journal, Dec., 6, 2010, P. 46-49.
3Romania, Hungary, Bulgaria.
4U.S. data are from various EIA sources.
Labels: shale gas