Government and industry team up to launch new shale gas study

So the government’s shale push continues after yesterday’s business rate bonanza for local councils, with a new study to assess what the industry needs in terms of skills, material and equipment.

The new study, conducted by EY, is jointly funded by the Department of Business Skills & Innovation (BIS) and the United Kingdom Onshore Operators Group (UKOOG), which represents the onshore oil and gas industry.

It will identify what the industry requires in terms of skills, materials and equipment to construct and operate a single pad site in production and will consider water treatment facilities, transport requirements and rigs.

The research will also look at the types of jobs that will be created, both directly – in sectors such as engineering – and indirectly. A report by the Institute of Directors predicts that shale gas will create 74,000 jobs in the UK.

“The Government is encouraging safe exploration for shale gas to go ahead as quickly as possible,” said business and energy minister Michael Fallon.

“This study, which we are part-funding, will establish the UK's capability and help support the on-going work of the oil and gas industrial strategy to create new jobs, encourage investment and increase exports.”

Ken Cronin, chief executive of UKOOG, commented: “The development of a robust UK onshore oil and gas supply chain will improve the economics of the projects being developed by the oil and gas industry.

“We have a huge opportunity of creating that supply chain here in the UK, this study is the first plank in ensuring that this happens and that the UK fully benefits from the natural resources below our feet in terms of investment and jobs.”