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Shale Gas Market is Expected to Reach $104.1 Billion, Globally, by 2020

Despite the latent commercial potential, the regulatory issues in various regions would impede market growth. According to UK government, fracking would be impractical in the parts of UK due to the scarcity of the water supplies. Amidst, various European countries such as Poland, United Kingdom, and Algeria would start the production of shale gas in next two to three years with the help of advance extraction technology.

Shiv Shukla

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According to a new market research report by Allied Market Research titled, "Shale Gas Market - Global Opportunity Analysis and Industry Forecast, 2013 - 2020", the global shale gas market is forecast to reach$104.1 billion by 2020, registering a CAGR of 9.3% during the forecast period (2014 - 2020). The corresponding volume consumption will reach 19,619.4 bcf in the same year. The advent of hydraulic fracturing and horizontal drilling techniques has nearly doubled the efficiency of shale gas retrieval from plays, revolutionizing the shale gas market. China is a major Asian country to propel the demand aided by insatiable energy needs and increasing dependence on natural gas.

"Shale gas, as potent alternative source of natural gas, is expected to shake up the global energy market in the coming years. The availability of large number of shale plays, which is estimated at 6,148 tcf in total, is presenting opportunity for marketer", state AMR analysts Apurva Sale and Guru Mallick. "Technological advancements vis--vis the exploration and extraction of shale gas are enabling corporations to gain strategically advantageous positions in the competitive market", add the analysts. Though the large number of shale gas reserves are available across the world, (North America1685 tcf, South America1430 tcf, Europe470 tcf, Middle East and Africa1393 tcf, and Asia-Pacific1170 tcf), exploration and extraction still remains the major challenge in most of the regions due to high extraction cost and large amount water usage in conventional processes. The technological trend such as hydraulic fracturing and horizontal drilling for the extraction of the shale gas are contributing to the rise in the production of shale gas in various geographies. As shale plays are available in abundance and almost equally across the regions, the mass production will lower dependence on fossil fuel reserves which is available only in specific region. More energy independence with shale gas adoption will eventually lead to better economic stability of the country.

Shale Gas has a wide ranging application in power generation, industrial usage, residential and commercial utility and usage in transportation. The power generation sector would benefit the most from the adoption of shale gas as it would be a cost-effective alternative that ensures reduced electricity costs.

The worldwide adoption of shale gas as an energy resource would undoubtedly benefit every region. The usage of unconventional energy resource is an upcoming trend in the energy industry. A substantial number of shale reserves in countries such as China, Argentina and Algeria would act as a golden opportunity for companies to enter the shale gas market. The Asia Pacific region appears especially attractive due to the up gradation of technology for the extraction of shale gas and the significant number of shale reserves. In-spite large availability of shale reserves in the European countries the production and adoption would be at lower side due to stringent regulatory hurdles.

Key players such as Baker Hughes Incorporation, Anadarko Petroleum Corporation, BHP Billiton Limited, Royal Dutch Shell, ConcoPhillips, ExxonMobil & Chesapeake Energy Corporation and the developmental strategies adopted by them have been carefully examined. Acquisitions, expansions, partnerships, collaborations and joint ventures are some major strategies adopted by market players in order to sustain in the competitive market.

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