Opinion

The next "Shale Gale"?


David Bamford opines on the world's great shales!

A few weeks ago I used my blog/Newsletter to quiz readers on what they regarded as the world's great source rocks. And, by inference, where might the next “Shale Gale” be blowing, mimicking what has happened in the USA?

I'm glad to say I got an unusually large number of response which I'd summarise like this:

First of all, mentioned were shales offshore in the Gulf of Mexico; in Venezuela and Argentina; onshore in North Africa; offshore NW Europe and in Russia/the FSU; throughout the Middle East. SE Asia and Australasia did not feature but this almost certainly reflects our readership rather than petroleum geology.

Secondly, all the shales mentioned had fed a significant, mostly major, conventional petroleum province. This gives some weight to the idea that future unconventional petroleum provinces will be in the same place as existing, or historic, conventional ones.

If this reflects reality, then it guides us as to where to go to stand in the next “Shale Gale”.

Or maybe I could stand accused of “leading the witnesses”!


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