The Independent has reported that Caudrilla’s PR advisor from Bell Pottinger has apparently admitted that a UK shale gas boom’s impact on gas prices would be “basically insignificant”. So the industry is finally catching up with the views of many including the Parliamentary Select Committee on Energy and Climate Change which said in April 2013 that:
“It is generally agreed that it [shale gas] is more expensive to produce than conventional gas. The low prices experienced in the US are a consequence of a unique set of factors which differ markedly to the UK.” and further that “We conclude that it is too early to say whether domestic production of shale gas could result in cheaper gas prices in the UK. It is unlikely that the US experience will be directly replicated in the UK because of differences in geology, public attitudes, regulations and technological uncertainties.”
The same PR advisor has said that without a community social licence to operate then unconventional gas in the UK ‘is not going to happen’. That sounds about right.