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Essar, GEECL likely to start shale gas exploration

Udit Mukherjee

The Times of India

Jul 27th, 2018

Essar_Oil_and_Gas_Exploration_Raniganj

The operating coal bed methane (CBM) players in Bengal such as Essar Oil & Gas Exploration (EOGE) and Great Eastern Energy (GEECL) are likely to start exploration of shale gas soon following a notification of the petroleum ministry. The ministry has allowed CBM operators to explore shale gas through a notification on July 24. The Union Cabinet is likely to take up this notification soon.

Vilas Tawde, managing director of EOGE, welcomed the move of the Centre and said as soon as the petroleum ministry announces the policy, it will submit exploration programme for shale gas to the Director General Hydrocarbon (DGH). Great Eastern Energy chairman Y K Modi had also said earlier that once the policy is in place, GEECL will apply for exploration.“As per the new notification, we can explore shale gas within the existing contract,” Tawde added.

EOGE has an recommended reserve of 1.5 trillion cubic feet of shale gas in its block near Raniganj in West Bengal. “There is lot of synergy between CBM and shale gas. The water we are getting from CBM production can be used for cracking shale well,” he added.

Eastern region has a huge potential of shale gas as most of the CBM reserves is located here. The estimated shale gas reserve in the region is up to 96 trillion cubic feet. DGH officials had earlier said that there was a wide variance in the estimation of shale gas. Like in east, the estimate is 6 to 96 TCF.

There was an indication that DGH may carry out an estimation so that the operators can have an idea.