POLAND: End of shale gas El Dorado?
22 March 2012
Dziennik Gazeta Prawna, Rzeczpospolita
“We’ve got a problem: gas has evaporated,” headlines Dziennik Gazeta Prawna, commenting a report by the Polish State Geological Institute (PIG) published March 21 which suggests that Poland may have extractable shale gas deposits between 346 to 768 billion cubic metres, some 7 to 15 times less than previously estimated.
After last year’s assessments by US Energy Information Administration (EIA), which estimated Poland’s shale gas reserves at 5.3 trillion cubic metres, the news could dampen expectations that Poland could be independent of Russian gas imports for the next 300 years.
Rzeczpospolita warns that even though the maximum shale gas deposits in Poland may be still as high as 1.92 trillion cubic metres, the report may “curb the enthusiasm of Polish and international corporations to invest huge sums of money in prospecting licenses and test drilling”. On a more positive note, the conservative daily observes that -
Although Poland may not become a leading global gas exporter, [the amounts of shale gas] that have been documented and determined as extractable would cover [the country’s] full demand for gas for a period of 35 to 65 years! A prospect hard to believe several years ago.