Frackers Set Their Sights on the World

Friday, June 14, 2013
(graphic: Global Exchange).

Those working in the hydraulic fracturing business were undoubtedly pleased by the U.S. government’s first-ever assessment of just how much untapped shale gas and oil currently exists beneath the planet’s surface.


Until now, the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) had produced estimates on shale resources only in North America. But with the rapid growth in the fracking industry, it’s not surprising to find Washington looking abroad at future oil and gas reserves since these underground supplies can be exploited with new drilling methods.


EIA analysts calculate there may be enough global shale resources (345 billion barrels in 42 countries) to cover more than a decade of oil consumption.


The nations with the most technically recoverable shale gas resources are said to be China, Argentina, Algeria, the United States, Canada and Mexico.


The nations with the most technically recoverable shale oil resources are Russia, the United States, China, Argentina and Libya.


Argentina was said to have “world-class shale gas and shale oil potential—possibly the most prospective outside of North America,” according to EIA. Companies like Exxon-Mobil and others are already carrying out “significant” exploration in Argentina as well as “early-stage commercial production.”

-Noel Brinkerhoff


To Learn More:

Argentina Shale Oil Reserves Rank Fourth behind Russia, China and US, Says Latest Energy Report (MercoPress)

World Has 10 Years of Shale Oil: US Department of Energy (by Gregory Meyer, Financial Times)

Technically Recoverable Shale Oil and Shale Gas Resources: An Assessment of 137 Shale Formations in 41 Countries Outside the United States (U.S. Energy Information Administration)

Latest Opponents of Fracking…German Beer Makers (by Noel Brinkerhoff, AllGov)


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