August 09, 2016 | Energy & Utilities
Europe continues to depend on imports for its energy needs, be it for oil or for gas, but no major developments for shale gas are expected in the coming years due to a number of factors. Nearly 35 percent of the regions’ present energy needs is satisfied by crude oil, with another 20 to 25 percent being supplied by natural gas. Coal and other solid fuels account for another 20 percent, nuclear energy accounts for 15 percent and the final 10 percent is satisfied by the use of renewables. Europe’s import dependence saw an increase over the past 2 decades and this trend is expected to continue over the next few decades.
The major factors that contribute to the development of shale gas in any region include the availability of sufficient gas reserves, favorable legislation, suitable infrastructure, technological prowess, political support and fiscal muscle. There are a number of reasons that led to the boom of shale gas development in the U.S., but the following can be considered the most important ones that resulted in a magic bullet:
As for whether or not shale gas development could be seen in the European region in the coming years, the following factors are seen as hindrances and roadblocks in the development of shale gas:
Taking all of these factors into consideration, shale gas development across Europe would take a while before it becomes a reality. This has resulted in major petrochemical producers in Europe striking deals with gas manufacturers in the U.S. for their feedstock needs. Borealis is leading this kind of model and is pushing ahead with U.S. ethane imports by signing a long term deal with Antero Resources with plans to reduce costs and Navigator holdings will be shipping ethane from the U.S. Many uncertainties and roadblocks make it difficult to predict the future of unconventional energy in Europe and it is highly unlikely that the energy boom that took place in the U.S. is going to be replicated in Europe anytime soon.