The Haynesville shale play runs through northwestern Louisiana, northeastern Texas, and the southwestern tip of Arkansas. Some industry experts believe the Haynesville shale could ultimately produce as much as 30 to 40 trillion cubic feet of natural gas and will outproduce the Barnett shale in less than five years. The reason is the formation is very deep and very thick. The depth and high pressures make drilling expensive, but the payout is believed to be worth the cost.
Chesapeake Energy is the major leaseholder and producer in the Haynesville, but several smaller operators, including Houston-based Petrohawk Energy, have acquired significant positions and are increasing production quickly. The Cotton Valley tight gas formation is located just above the Haynesville shale and is also a major target for companies operating in this area.
The “natural gas revolution” is changing global energy dynamics, including the outlook for energy security in the United States and elsewhere. In his keynote speech to the annual 31st annual CERAWeek Executive Conference in Houston, Peter Voser, CEO of Royal Dutch Shell plc, outlines what the industry and policymakers must do to ensure society fully leverages the many benefits of natural gas. He calls for well-targeted and robustly enforced regulations to ensure tight and shale gas production meets the highest standards. He also urges the industry to do a better job of listening and responding to public concerns about the environmental and operational challenges associated with gas production.
Read the full speech by Peter Voser here.
The total value of US oil and gas mergers and acquisitions increased significantly in 2011 due to continued investment in US shale plays and related infrastructure, sustained interest from foreign buyers, and private equity entrants deploying capital in the energy industry, according to an analysis of energy M&A data by PwC US. A major trend in the energy sector driving the increase in deal value throughout the year was a shift towards more investments in oil and liquid plays as natural gas prices remained depressed amid hitting a 10-year low in 2011.
Read more here.
Can the shale gas revolution currently taking place in the US be repeated elsewhere? Although significant volumes of unconventional gas deposits are present in Poland, France, Germany, Hungary, Sweden, Turkey, and the UK, shale gas developments are running many years behind their counterparts in the US. Skeptics have pointed out that differences in geology, taxes, public acceptance, environmental regulations and other factors in Europe vs. the US make for a tougher environment in which to develop unconventional resources.
Read the article by Bart J. A. Willigers of Palantir Solutions Ltd. here.