UK 'unlikely' to replicate U.S. shale success
Despite having substantial shale gas resources, analysts believe that the UK is unlikely to replicate the U.S. “shale success story,” writes World Review author and energy economist Dr. Carole Nakhle.
“A limited onshore domestic service industry, geological complexities, no private ownership of mineral rights, high population densities, strict environmental regulations, and local opposition, among other obstacles, all add to the cost and time of exploiting shale gas,” she says in World Review, a free-access website focusing on global geopolitical affairs.
UK George Osborne, chancellor of the Exchequer, has offered a package of measures to encourage exploration of the UK's shale gas resources, including “a generous new tax regime for shale.”
“To date, only a small number of small companies have expressed interest in shale gas,” she says. “Although the recent acquisition by energy giant Centrica of a 25 percent stake in Cuadrilla’s exploration license in Lancashire is seen as an encouraging sign.”
However, local communities continue to oppose shale gas exploration. “There are fears that fracking will cause serious environmental damage, from earthquakes to ground and water contamination. It would be difficult for companies to proceed with their plans without the blessing of local communities,” she adds.
What has been done so far is just the start of a long process before the UK can claim, with certainty, that shale gas resources will dramatically alter its energy realities, says Nakhle.
Nakhle is an energy economist, based in London, UK, specializing in international petroleum fiscal regimes, world oil and gas market developments, and energy policy. She is associate lecturer in Energy Economics at the University of Surrey and acts as external expert for the Fiscal Affairs Department at the International Monetary Fund (IMF).
Hydrostor receives $4m funding for A-CAES facility in Canada
Hydrostor has received $4m funding to develop a 300-500MW Advanced Compressed Air Energy Storage (A-CAES) facility in Canada.
The funding will be used to complete essential engineering and planning, and enable Hydrostor to plan construction.
The project will be modeled on Hydrostor’s commercially operating Goderich storage facility, providing up to 12 hours of energy storage.
Hydrostor’s A-CAES system supports Canada’s green economic transition by designing, building, and operating emissions-free energy storage facilities, and employing people, suppliers, and technologies from the oil and gas sector.
The Honorable Seamus O’Regan, Jr. Minister of Natural Resources, said: “Investing in clean technology will lower emissions and increase our competitiveness. This is how we get to net zero by 2050.”
A-CAES has the potential to lower greenhouse gas emissions by enabling the transition to a cleaner and more flexible electricity grid. Specifically, the low-impact and cost-effective technology will reduce the use of fossil fuels and will provide reliable and bankable energy storage solutions for utilities and regulators, while integrating renewable energy for sustainable growth.
Curtis VanWalleghem, Hydrostor’s Chief Executive Officer, said: “We are grateful for the federal government’s support of our long duration energy storage solution that is critical to enabling the clean energy transition. This made-in-Canada solution, with the support of NRCan and Sustainable Development Technology Canada, is ready to be widely deployed within Canada and globally to lower electricity rates and decarbonize the electricity sector."
The Rosamond A-CAES 500MW Project is under advanced development and targeting a 2024 launch. It is designed to turn California’s growing solar and wind resources into on-demand peak capacity while allowing for closure of fossil fuel generating stations.
Hydrostor closed US$37 million (C$49 million) in growth financing in September 2019.