Best of the Week
Most Popular
1.The Greatest Stock Market Crash Of Your Life Is Just Ahead… – Warns Harry Dent - GoldCore
2.Budget 2016: Borrowing, Lifetime ISA, House Prices, Economy, Syria, Brexit and Stocks - Nadeem_Walayat
3.Gold Price Intermediate Top - Clive_Maund
4.Brussels Terror Attacks, Death of the European Union, BrExit Wake up Call - Nadeem_Walayat
5.Stock Market Maybe This Time is Different? - Tony_Caldaro
6.UK House Asking Prices Break Above £300k! Housing Market Paralysis - Nadeem_Walayat
7.A Big Reason Why Silver Price Is Set To Soar - Hubert_Moolman
8.The Financial Crisis Has Just Begun; Is The American Dream Is Over? - Chris_Vermeulen
9.Gold Stocks Spring Rally - Zeal_LLC
10.GLX, GLDX, Baby Gold Bull Market Stillborn? - Rambus_Chartology
Last 7 days
Consensus Forming: China Heading Back Into Financial Crisis - 30th Apr 16
The Next Technical Price Targets for Gold & Silver - 30th Apr 16
Stock Market Downtrend Should be Underway - 30th Apr 16
Gold And Silver – A Clarion Alarm Call For All Paper Assets - 30th Apr 16
US Economic Statistics LIES, LIES AND OMG, MORE LIES - 30th Apr 16
Stock Market Strong Elliott Wave Relationship is Developing - 29th Apr 16
Fed's Kaplan: Brexit to Factor in US June Interest Rate Decision - 29th Apr 16
Silver Miners Strong in Grim Q4 - 29th Apr 16
Is Silver a better bet than Gold in the Near Future? - 29th Apr 16
How to Use the CoT Report in Gold Investing? - 29th Apr 16
Sri Lanka is Intriguing: Areas to Consider for Value Investing - 29th Apr 16
Gold “Chart of The Decade” – Maths Suggest $10,000 Per Ounce Says Rickards - 29th Apr 16
Are We or Are We Not in a New Gold Bull Market? - 29th Apr 16
Silver: The “Five Year Plan” and the Great Leap Forward - 28th Apr 16
Michael Hudson: The Wall Street Economy Has Taken Over The Economy and Is Draining It! - 28th Apr 16
AUD/USD - Trend Reversal or Just a Bigger Pullback? - 28th Apr 16
A Gold Revaluation Could Transform Your Financial Status - Overnight - 28th Apr 16
Monetary Policies Misunderstood - 28th Apr 16
Gold Bullion vs Gold Miners - 28th Apr 16
OECD Suggests BrExit Would Cut Net Migration by 1.2 Million by 2030 - 28th Apr 16
MP Naz Shah Punished for Tweets Made During Israel's Genocide of Gaza Palestinian People - 28th Apr 16
Global Recession in 2016 and Beyond - The Obvious Evidence - 27th Apr 16
Why Gold Bugs Need to Stop Listening to The Fear Mongers and Start Thinking for a Change - 27th Apr 16
BlackRock’s Fink: Fed to Raise Interest Rates by Quarter Point ‘at Best’ - 27th Apr 16
Gold More Productive Than Cash?! - 27th Apr 16
Donald Trump Will Fire Janet Yellen and Be Trapped - 27th Apr 16
Money Saving Gardening by Propagating Roses From Cuttings - Propagating Rose Plants Over 2.5 Years - 27th Apr 16
Facebook Censors Pro Trump and Negative Hillary News - 27th Apr 16
This is the Era of the Democrats and Your Taxes are Going Up - 27th Apr 16
Long Awaited Gold Price Breakout - 26th Apr 16
Crude Oil Price Double Top or Further Rally? - 26th Apr 16
Madness in the Crimex Gold and Silver Trading Pits - 26th Apr 16
Britain's Prospects: GBP and BREXIT - MAP Wave Analysis - 26th Apr 16
CRB, Gold, Oil, Cotton, Coffee - 7 Must See Commodities Charts - 26th Apr 16
Gold Price Target is $3,000 and Silver is $75 per Ounce - 25th Apr 16
Parameters for a Stock Market Sell Signal-in-the-making - 25th Apr 16
Stock Market Dangerous Divergence - 25th Apr 16
Gold Miners Nub is the Sweat of the Sun - 24th Apr 16
US Dollar Price Forecast - 24th Apr 16
Stock Market Upside Objective Reached - 24th Apr 16
Why Leftist Greeks have more reasons than Liberals to favour Entrepreneurship and Support Entrepreneurs - 24th Apr 16
The Dow Jones is a Catalyst for Misplaced Stock Market Optimism - 24th Apr 16
Why Russia Harasses U.S. Aircraft and Ships - 24th Apr 16
Stocks Bull or Bear Market Rally? - 23rd Apr 16
A Bright Future for Solar Power in the Middle East - 23rd Apr 16
Silver Commitments of Traders – Halloween is Arriving Early This Year - 23rd Apr 16
Good News, Bad News, Both Favor Gold And Silver - 23rd Apr 16
Mish's Sure Fire Proposal to End Japanese Deflation - 23rd Apr 16
Mish Shedlock: “EXCUSE ME MR. PRESIDENT, IS THAT A JOKE?” - 23rd Apr 16

Free Instant Analysis

Free Instant Technical Analysis


Market Oracle FREE Newsletter

Catching a Falling Financial Knife

The Brewing Shale Gas Energy Boom That Nobody is Talking About

Commodities / Natural Gas Nov 27, 2012 - 10:07 AM GMT

By: Money_Morning

Commodities

Dr. Kent Moors writes: While folks back in the U.S. were sitting down to Thanksgiving dinner, I was making my way back to Frankfurt, Germany from Warsaw, Poland.

My discussions in the Polish capital were with the PGNiG, the national state-run gas company and the government's designated partner in all domestic drilling operations.


Unlike my German conversations, there is considerable optimism these days that the energy picture in Poland is about to change in a major way-thanks to shale gas.

Poland must overcome a serious of challenges, which, of course, were the reasons for our meetings. And despite the upbeat tenor of everybody involved, significant concerns have emerged.

On the positive side, Polish officials have committed to a rapid development of unconventional gas. In addition, no domestic opposition to drilling exists, at least not yet.

Unlike back in Germany, nascent environmental movements have neither the political clout nor the apparent interest in making this an issue.

Polish operations are currently in a very early stage, which may be the reason for the lack of opposition. Only a few test wells have been drilled (less than 15 in all), and none are near residential populations.

For that matter, PGNiG is preparing to start its first horizontal drilling operation. The test wells thus far have all been spud by foreign companies.

However, it is now clear that the "rapid" ramp up foreseen by the authorities in the central government is not working out as anticipated back at the well sites.

For one thing, the initial wells have either come in dry or produced disappointing gas flows. For another, the national gas company is under considerable pressure to produce positive results in what is becoming a very challenging technical environment.

The former result is hardly surprising. There remains insufficient geology and preliminary field prospecting. The locations of shale deposits are well known. The country has no less than five very promising basins. But Mother Nature has an irritating habit of indifferently placing hydrocarbons in those basins.

That requires initial evaluations before the expensive proposition of sinking exploratory wells commences. Thus far, the few wells attempted have been positioned with little more than rudimentary data and guesswork. The poor initial results, therefore, reflect such considerations more than anything else.

There seems little doubt that there are considerable reserves, but finding where they are remains a major undertaking.

Here challenges exist that are not a problem back in the United States.

But solving them could lead to huge breakthroughs for companies in the U.S. and energy investors alike.

The Challenges Add Up for PGNiG
For example, successful placement of wells requires early seismic studies. Yet much of the Poland's road infrastructure cannot withstand the weight of the seismic vehicles (better known in the trade as "thumpers"). In addition, much of the support equipment - everything from pressure trucks to water control, fracking, and fluid control systems - is not available.

This means that when the second situation confronting PGNiG is considered, additional pressure is brought to bear. The government has challenged the company to move quickly. And Warsaw is providing some rather significant working capital. But PGNiG needs far more support... and the company needs it immediately.

Normally, that would seem to be a bonanza for outside specialists and providers already seasoned in developing shale gas elsewhere. Unfortunately, matters are frustrated in securing an easy import of technology and expertise. All provisions must be a result of tenders, a laborious bidding process that runs the risk of sacrificing expertise for price.

In addition, both Polish and European Union (EU) regulations make it difficult for outside technology to make its way easily to development inside the county. Even setting up a local subsidiary of a foreign company is not enough, given the need to authenticate the domestic origin of the equipment and support provided. Simply setting up a local affiliate to serve as an importer is not enough.

Yet even before the tender process can be initiated, PGNiG and the authorities must be on the same page about what must be done and what is required to do it.

That remains elusive, virtually assuring further process delays. There are a range of disagreements remaining. These include:

•the type of drilling equipment that will be allowed;
•the chemical composition of the fracking fluid;
•methods for dealing with flow back water (as much as 35% of the water put down hole in the process to blow open the rock comes right back up with the gas flow - with the water now containing a mixture of tailings, chemicals, and hydrocarbons);
•the number of wells allowed per pad;
•maximum frack stages;
•the types of equipment needed on the surface, and
•how to move this equipment to and from the drilling site.

In every basic sense, Poland is at square one in a process that it wants expedited. And at the same time, the nation wants to add another item to the agenda.

Both the government and PGNiG want to tackle the environmental concerns before they become the source of popular opposition to the gas operations.

A Win-Win For Investors
Popular opinion remains decidedly in favor of shale gas development. This mainly stems from the desire to wean the country off its reliance on Russian natural gas imports. There is also the possibility that, should significant extractable volume be discovered, a new Polish exporting capability would emerge to end users elsewhere in Europe (via existing pipeline networks), even serving wider markets as liquefied natural gas (LNG) from a terminal on the Baltic coast.

But this is Europe. As other countries have already witnessed, environmental opposition forms both domestically and regionally. PGNiG, therefore, needs to address problems surfacing at the local level in Poland and from the much larger EU perspective in Brussels.

And to its credit, that is precisely what PGNiG has decided to do.

This is not a public relations ploy.

The company intends to identify and confront the problems plaguing shale gas elsewhere. This is beginning to form, however, indirectly, in questions residents are starting to pose with local governments. Inquiries will become more visible and numerous as the drilling accelerates.

I spent most of my time in Warsaw laying out the environmental difficulties experienced in North America, and proposed a few ways to confront these problems with transparency and innovation.

My belief has always been straightforward enough. I believe that approaching the environmental problems honestly and openly provides the best way for technological advances to confront the downside drilling.

Despite the shortcomings facing Poland as it races into the shale gas age, there may also be a major opportunity here.

Here at the beginning of drilling projects, an environmental commitment may usher in a new generation of advances that enable the emergence of an energy source and introduce an accepted responsibility for the stewardship of nature.

Seems like a win-win to me.

Source :http://moneymorning.com/2012/11/27/the-brewing-shale-gas-energy-boom-that-nobody-is-talking-about/

Money Morning/The Money Map Report

©2012 Monument Street Publishing. All Rights Reserved. Protected by copyright laws of the United States and international treaties. Any reproduction, copying, or redistribution (electronic or otherwise, including on the world wide web), of content from this website, in whole or in part, is strictly prohibited without the express written permission of Monument Street Publishing. 105 West Monument Street, Baltimore MD 21201, Email: customerservice@moneymorning.com

Disclaimer: Nothing published by Money Morning should be considered personalized investment advice. Although our employees may answer your general customer service questions, they are not licensed under securities laws to address your particular investment situation. No communication by our employees to you should be deemed as personalized investent advice. We expressly forbid our writers from having a financial interest in any security recommended to our readers. All of our employees and agents must wait 24 hours after on-line publication, or after the mailing of printed-only publication prior to following an initial recommendation. Any investments recommended by Money Morning should be made only after consulting with your investment advisor and only after reviewing the prospectus or financial statements of the company.

Money Morning Archive

© 2005-2016 http://www.MarketOracle.co.uk - The Market Oracle is a FREE Daily Financial Markets Analysis & Forecasting online publication.


Post Comment

Only logged in users are allowed to post comments. Register/ Log in

Catching a Falling Financial Knife