Shale gas should be used to help the UK transition to more renewable energy sources and the revenue it generates can be invested in low carbon technologies, a new report has said.
“The evidence is clear that it is not feasible to create a renewable and low carbon industry in the short term in the UK that can meet the UK’s energy needs as a whole,” said the study by Task Force on Shale Gas, an industry-backed body chaired by former Environment Agency boss Chris Smith.
“There is a requirement for gas to play a significant role in the UK’s energy mix in the short and medium term.”
Shale gas has attracted controversy in the UK, due to the fracking technique used to extract the gas, which its opponents claim causes environmental damage.
But its supporters – including the government – say it could bolster the UK’s energy security as oil reserves fall in the North Sea.
The report says that shale gas is less damaging to the environment than liquefied natural gas, and suggests investing future revenues in carbon capture storage and low carbon energy generation.