Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Shale Gas - An Introduction

Welcome to the Collaborative Revolution!

This is the first in a series of shale gas posts.  These posts will focus on opportunities for the use of integrated project delivery, virtual design and construction and lean processes in planning, designing, constructing and maintaining the infrastructure associated the development of natural gas resources found in shale formations around the world.

Advances in technology and extraction methods have rendered recoverable vast reserves of gas trapped in shale formations around the world.  Combining advances in the use of Fischer-Tropsch techniques to convert natural gas feed stock to liquid fuels and other valuable products with the revelation of these vast oil and gas reserves has fundamentally changed global landscape both politically and economically.  Successfull recovery will depend on completion of substantial infrastructure in each market.

The US Energy Information Agency (eia) comissioned an analysis of 48 shale gas basins in 32 countries containing 70 seperate shale gas formations and the report, authored by Advanced Resources International and released april 5, 2011, revealed 5,760 trillion cubic feet of technically recoverable shale gas in those 32 countries.  The US has 862 trillion cubic feet of technically recoverable shale gas.  In 2010 technically recoverable gas resoureces, largely excluding shale gas, were estimated to be 16,000 trillion cubic feet.  The report published by the eia April 5, 2011 adds 6,622 trillion cubic feet - over 40% - to that estimate for a total of 22,600 trillion cubic feet.  The report does not address oil in those shale formations, does not provide any analysis of any shale formations in Central Africa, does not address shale formations in North and South Africa, or in Russia or Central Asia.

The report indicates, "The development of shale gas plays has become a "game changer" for the U.S. natural gas market."  The same will soon be true globally.

Natrual gas is cleaner than coal or oil and is far more abundent and reliable than solar, wind and other green energy options.  Nuclear has a huge black eye due the tsunami in Japan and the revelation of these vast untapped reserves of shale gas represent an enormous opportunity.

Responsibly developing these resources will spark much needed economic growth both domestically and internationally.  Stakeholders involved in these shale gas plays will benefit from the use of integrated project delivery, virtual design and construction methods and lean business processes of all kinds.  International players like Shell, Exxon and BP understand the value of these innovative business processes and have experience deploying thse tools in the planning, design, construction, operation and maitenance of complex energy industry infrastructure.  Smaller players in the industry as well as strategic alliances and coallitions will benefit from integrating these processes and will earn huge returns on innovation.

Followers of this blog, readers of the Collaborative Construction Newsletter and members of Collaborative BIM Advocates are well positioned to form teams capable of delivering integrated services to stakeholders invovled in development of shale gas resources.  This Shale Gas series will highlight the opportunities.

World Shale Gas Resources:  An Initial Assessment of 14 Regions Outside the United States

The link takes you to a 7 page summary of the report.  When you click on the link took to the right side of the page and you will see a link via which you can download a complete PDF copy of the 365 page report.  Please feel free to contact me if you have any questions.

James L. Salmon, Esq.
Collaborative Construction
300 Pike Street
Cincinnati, Ohio 45202
Office 513-721-5672
Fax 513-562-4388
Cell 512-630-4446
Collaborative Construction Website
Sustainable Land Development International

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