Commenting on a shale oil report published today (14 February), Mary Church, Campaigns Co-ordinator, Friends of the Earth Scotland, said:

“We already know of about five times more coal, oil and gas than it is safe to burn without guaranteeing catastrophic climate change, so the last thing we need to do is to exploit new kinds of fossil fuels.”

“Scotland has 25 per cent of Europe’s renewable energy potential and a vast wealth of knowledge and experience to realise it. Instead of trying to play catchup on fracking with the USA, the oil and gas industry should use their expertise to help turn Scotland into a world leader in offshore renewables.”

The report ‘Shale Oil – the Next Energy Revolution’ published by PricewaterhouseCoopers claims that shale gas could contribute to greater energy independence and lower oil prices in the UK.[1]

However, leading commentators have warned that the USA’s experience is unlikely to be repeated in Europe, with Deutsche Bank predicting that those waiting for a shale gas revolution will be disappointed.[2]

The price of gas under unconventional gas company Dart Energy’s deal to supply Scottish and Southern Energy with gas from their Coal Bed Methane project at Airth is linked to prevailing market prices.[3]

Mary Church added: “Those hoping for an era of cheap gas are going to be sorely disappointed.”


For media enquiries, please contact:
Per Fischer, Press Office, Friends of the Earth Scotland t: 0131 243 2719

Notes to Editors

1. PwC warns oil industry over fracking impact (BBC News)

2. Deutsche Bank, European Gas: A First Look At EU Shale-Gas Prospects www.shalegas-europe.eu/en/docs/Deutsche_Bank_Report.pdf

3. Expanded Gas Sales Agreement for UK CBM (Dart Energy)

4. The Offshore Valuation Group estimates that the exploiting just one-third of the UK’s offshore renewable potential could result unlock the electricity equivalent of 1bn barrels of oil a year (matching North Sea oil and gas production); create 145,000 new UK jobs; and give CO2 reductions of 1.1bn tonnes by 2050. www.offshorevaluation.org/

2. Friends of the Earth Scotland is * Scotland’s leading environmental campaigning organisation * An independent Scottish charity with a network of thousands of supporters and active local groups across Scotland * Part of the largest grassroots environmental network in the world, uniting over 2 million supporters, 77 national member groups, and some 5,000 local activist groups – covering every continent. www.foe-scotland.org.uk