Shale gas has become an issue in recent time world over. Various governments have set up groups of experts to look around their countries and see if the resource is available, and if it is available in what quantity.
Unfortunately the recent reports about the available of the shale across the world Nigeria is found to be among the countries in contention. This situation has prompted the following questions: where is Nigeria and what is the government doing regarding this new energy source that will definitely affect the economy of the country so dependent on traditional sources of oil and gas that have been underfunded in the past few years, and with dwindling reserves?
The competition is taking a new dimension, especially where traditional markets and buyers of Nigerian oil and gas will soon become the latest sellers. Finding is one thing, but cost of delivery to buyer is another. So if Nigeria can reduce cost of production (less corruption, less community crises, less military cover, more available electricity, more use of cheaper local laboUr, etc) our oil and gas will still be more attractive to the buyers. And this looks an uphill task in current political dispensation.
What is NNPC or government doing about this?
Shale oil and shale gas resources are “abundant” around the globe, according to a recent study conducted by Advanced Resources International Inc. under contract to the US Energy Information Administration. The EIA/ARI study also ranks Russia in the top spot for technically recoverable shale oil resources.
The study, released June 10, estimates that global shale resources—in conjunction with the agency’s own assessment of resources within the US—indicate technically recoverable worldwide resources of 345 billion bbl of shale oil and 7,299 tcf of shale gas. Worldwide shale gas resources increased 10% over estimates made 2 years ago in a previous study.
Unlike the previous study, which focused exclusively on shale gas, the most recent study assesses both shale oil and gas resources and employs more and better geological information for formations outside the US. However, the study still does not assess many prospective shale formations, such as those in the Middle East and the Caspian region, EIA noted.
Among the 42 countries assessed, Russia is ranked first for technically recoverable shale oil resources with 75 billion bbl. China, with 1,115 tcf, is ranked first for technically recoverable shale gas resources. The US is ranked second after Russia for shale oil resources and fourth after Algeria for shale gas resources.
The geology and resource recovery rates of similar shale formations in the US that have produced shale oil and shale gas from thousands of producing wells are used to estimate the shale resources outside the US.