Good Dissertation On Shale Gas In Ireland

Type of paper: Dissertation

Topic: Gas, Fracking, Ireland, Oil, Energy, World, England, Company

Pages: 7

Words: 1925

Published: 2020/12/27

ID Number


Exploration of gas and oil both offshore and onshore in Ireland has been a dash of hope. Yet, with recent advancements in high-end technology used for exploration methods, gas and oil is potentially ubiquitous and abundant all over the world, including Ireland. The energy issue in the country requires greater acceptance of reality.
Ireland makes use of 130,000 barrels of oil per day or an estimated €3.6bn annually. The country also trade in 4.2 billion cubic metres at a value of approximately €1bn. If Ireland’s energy becomes independent, this would reduce the country’s current foreign debt by over 7%. Importing energy is equivalent to exporting money. Essentially, the gas and oil situated underneath Ireland could offer a better boost to the country’s economy.
Ireland has low royalty rates of oil and gas at 25%, however, even that would mean over €1bn annually to the Minister of Finance. The actual profits would be more remarkable as the gas and oil area would see worldwide speculation streaming and employment creation. Work creation means lower social spending and individuals paying charges to bring down the shortage much further.
Northern Ireland’s gas market is relatively small with an estimated 120,000 households and over 8,000 companies associated with the gas network. This system is made up of a distribution network situated in the Greater Belfast, with a pipeline located northwest from Carrick Fergus to Derry. The second pipeline comes north from the Ireland through Newry to Antrim. One of the possible fracking areas, Fermanagh, is still not linked to the gas network. The power generation sector is fuelled by gas, with two generators powered by natural gas. In addition, Northern Ireland does not produce its own gas. Hence, it is greatly reliant on imports.


Fracking is a short word for hydraulic fracturing, a process in which gas and oil are derived from shale rock (Oates et al. 2013). There are two forms of gas – conventional and unconventional gas. Conventional gas can be explored easily while unconventional gas are difficult to obtain. In drilling a conventional gas, there is immediate low of gas and oil. In drilling unconventional gas, the rock has to be hydraulically fractured to allow gas to escape. There three forms of unconventional gas and one of them is the shale gas. The other two forms of unconventional gas are tight gas, situated in sandstone’s pore saces,and the coalbed methane which is found in coal seams (Oates et al. 2013).
Northern Ireland is part of the United Kingdom. According to the British Geological Society, the United Kingdom makes use of about 3 tcf each year (Oates et al. 2013).An estimated 50% of the United Kingdom is available or fracking. However, the main issue behind fracking concerns the environment. These issues include emissions coming from gas-processing equipment; leakage and spills from above ground storage; poor physical integrity of the well; and exposure to ground, water, and air pollutants. There are also seismic concerns due to the incident that happened in 2011 when fracking brought tremors at Preese Hall. The tremors measured 2.3 on the Richter scale (Oates et al. 2013).This event caused the delay in launching 14th onhore oil and gas licensing round in which companies are provided with an opportunity to apply for extraction rights and exclusive search.
In the United Kingdom, only one shale gas well has been examined. The stronger environment regulations and greater population density in Europe and the United Kingdom implies shale gas will have a different development rate than the United States (Oates et al. 2013).Moreover, in terms of providing energy to the United Kingdom, fracking remains yet to be accepted. Only 29% of the population support fracking while the majority supports renewable energy (Oates et al. 2013).
There are no exact figures as to the quantity of shale gas resources or reserves in Northern Ireland. According to Tamboran, the company that suggested to conduct drilling in Fermanagh, has estimated that the resources present in the area can guarantee supply until 2050 at present rates of gas consumption in Northern Ireland. Nevertheless, experience elsewhere demonstrates that these number are highly volatile.
Estimates of reserves of shale gas in Poland were reduced by 85% back in 2012, according to the data analysis from wells drilled between the year 1950s and 1980s. Also, the United States Energy Department reduced estimates of recoverable gas in the Marcellus by 66% in 2012, stating enhanced data on production and drilling.
In addition, exploratory licenses for petroleum has been a concern for Fermanagh between the Leitrim border and the Lough Erne border; south Antrim between Belfast Lough, Lough Neagh, and Larne Lough; east Londonderry and north Antrim between Ballycastle and Limavady, taking in Ballymoney and Coleraine, and Rathlin Island.
A fifth licence zone is presently under consideration for north Down and south Antrim, including Lisburn, Belfast, and Dundonald. It is essential to emphasize that a company having a licence for production and exploration cannot drill for shale gas without getting permission and approval from the regulators.


There are various arguments concerning fracking Ireland. Shale rich zones of Ireland, including Fermanagh, will soon experience drilling which at last could see the areas changed into shale gas fields. Tamboran, an Australian resources company, which has been provided a licence by the Northern Ireland Executive, is given permission to create exploratory boreholes along Belcoo in Fermanagh to gather samples. Should the tests indicate monetarily feasible levels of shale gas, further extraction is possibly going to happen in the future yet more approval would be required from the authorities for this to proceed.
The regular asset net is being given more extensive role as oil and gas supplies get to be progressively rare and more extravagant to get to. There are likewise worries about energy security given political change in resource-rich places, including Russia and the Middle East. Exploration companies are quick to discover new assets to convey to the business sector and governments need to guarantee that their energy demands are met.
Shale gas has been recognized in a zone known as the Northwest Ireland Carboniferous Basin, which includes parts of districts Leitrim, Cavan, Roscommon, Sligo, Donegal and Fermanagh. Exploration companies Tamboran estimates the Fermanagh area can possibly yield up to 2.2 trillion cubic feet of shale gas, a sum it says could give 50 years supply to Northern Ireland at current utilization rates. The estimation of such a yield has been evaluated reaching up to $50 billion.
Some of those included in fracking claim the procedure could convey security of supply of energy in Ireland for a considerable length of time, give various employment opportunities specifically and by implication and support in increasing tax revenues. Expanded supply and less demanding access to it ought to prompt less expensive energy prices, as it would diminish the dependence on fuels imported to the country, yet reality of this remaining parts are yet to be seen. The related employments and action are seen having positive spin off impacts by increasing expenditures, or spending power in the domestic economy. The organizations included in fracking would clearly expect an an answer to their speculation. The burning of common gas is viewed as less hurtful to the earth compared to oil and coal.
Adversaries of fracking say that on account of the exceptional nature and profundity of shale gas drilling, it can result in a more extensive scope of negative impacts than routine gas extraction for the earth and those living close boring locales. Concern has been communicated about potential gas releases, pollution of underground water, air contamination and even minor seismic tremors because of its underground nature. Inquiries have additionally been raised about the sheer volume of water that needs to be utilized as a part of fracking. These elements have prompted stresses over the effect of the practice could have on industries such as food production and tourism.
The studies conducted on fracking have recommended diverse things about its effect on nature. Some say the danger of water sources being sullied was no higher with fracking than other drilling techniques, and that most contamination was because of missteps made at ground level, such as spillage of waste water. Others say that outflows discharged amid the methodology can result in migraines and breathing issues in individuals living close to fracking activity and that drinking water close to drilling locales may build the levels of ethane, methane, and propane.
Deposits of shale gas in Northern Ireland could be worth about £80bn. It is accepted the greater part of the stores are in the north west and Fermanagh.The gas would need to be extricated utilizing a dubious methodology known as pressure driven breaking, or fracking. Sinn Féin have asserted the report was "uneven" and "dramatist". The issue of fracking has lately partitioned the group in Fermanagh.
PwC claims that abusing shale oil in the UK could help GDP increase by up to £50bn by 2035 and additionally boost the world economy (Fowler 2013). In Northern Ireland, the gas deposits have been assessed to provide around 1.5bn barrels of oil. John Hawksworth, superior economist at PwC, said that lower worldwide oil costs because of expanded shale oil supply could have a significant effect on the future development of the world economy by permitting more yield to be created at the same expense. These impacts could develop progressively as shale oil creation takes off over the world to deliver an expected ascent in worldwide GDP of around 2.3%-3.7% in 2035 (Fowler 2013)..


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