INEOS plans to invest $1B in UK shale gas

INEOS plans to invest $1 billion in shale gas exploration and appraisal in the UK as efforts to emulate the US shale boom ramp up.

The $1 billion investment in UK onshore shale gas could increase if the company moves into development and production. First, INEOS must win its Petroleum Exploration and Development licences (PEDLs) bids from the Department of Energy & Climate Change (DECC). According to the company, if it wins all PEDLs, the company would become "the biggest player in the UK’s shale gas industry," as noted in a prepared statement.

The vast majority of the INEOS bids are in Scotland and the North of England, where the local populations have either a mining or an industrial heritage.

Currently, INEOS owns two shale licences in Scotland comprising over 120,000 acres. Additionally, the company has invested an additional £400 million in a project to bring US shale gas to Grangemouth.

The company has announced plans to give 6% of any revenues from its production of shale gas to local communities (4% to home and owners above the well and 2% to the wider local community). This offer is typically worth and evidence is starting to emerge that suggests many communities welcome it.

Estimating the revenue return plan would gernerate approximately £375 million for a community, Jim Ratcliffe, INEOS founder and chairman, said, "I want INEOS to be the biggest player in the UK shale gas industry...I believe INEOS has the resources to make it happen, the skills to extract the gas safely and the vision to realize that everyone must share in the rewards," he said.

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