EU politicians on Wednesday voted for tougher rules on exposing the environmental impact of oil and conventional gas exploration, while excluding shale gas. Member states such as Britain and Poland are pushing hard for the development of shale gas, seen as one way to lessen dependence on Russian gas, as well as to lower energy costs as it has in the United States.
Industry said the new law avoided placing too many restrictions on projects during their early phases when commercial viability is unclear.
“While not imposing unnecessary requirements on the upstream oil and gas industry, the new rules will guarantee that any development, including exploration for shale gas, will be subject to strict environmental standards,” Roland Festor, director for EU affairs at the International Association of Oil & Gas Producers, said.
Shale Gas Europe, which brings together companies such as Chevron, Total and Cuadrilla Resources, also welcomed the law. “Shale gas could potentially play an important role in meeting Europe’s acute energy challenges,” Marcus Pepperell, spokesman for Shale Gas Europe, said.
L’Europe fait tout le contraire du Québec en accueillant à bras ouverts l’industrie des gaz de schiste. Ce n’est pas un hasard si le Québec est si pauvre…