With all the noise around shale gas in recent weeks being positive for the government it appears there is now a different view coming out of Whitehall. With the view now from leading politician that any idea of shale gas being an instant and long term cash cow to the UK economy being vastly wide of the mark.
Are Measured Plans For Shale Now Being Put In Place
Is this a genuine point of view or an attempt by the government to calm any concern about the industry and to prove a point that there will be no rushing into any large scale shale proliferation via fracking which is still an extremely contentious issue within the UK. Just the proposal from utilities companies to begin investigation work on various sites in recent months has caused to condemnation from areas under consideration.
Will Delays In Shale Lead To Further Investment In Renewable Energy
This is a hope that would definitely be shared by the industry as they would be quick to point out that although EU regulations have recently changed the UK is still signed up to targets for 2020 and 2030. Even though 2030 targets maybe a little more lax they are still targets that need to be met. Closures and cancelations have been reported regularly in our recent articles as government uncertainty has led to many large scale project loosing either investment or confidence.
How The UK Renewable Sector Continues To Grow And Develop
For every negative that has been reported recently there are multiple positives, whether this be through the technology advances i.e. Solar pv glass, solar pvt technologies reported here recently. As well as green light being lit on RHI and the ambitious plans of the climate change secretary Greg Baker i.e. community energy funding. Solar panels aside there are also huge investments being undertaken in places like the Isle Of Man who are looking to become a hub of renewable technology via tidal and offshore wind, also you have a company such as Atlantis Resources who have seen mass development and distribution of their tidal turbine infrastructure that they are soon looking to float on the markets.
Shale Gas Represents A Long-term Possibility
This is the true point, possibility there is no magic wand that an industry will appear overnight was the message from MP Vince Cable and including the emerging market in any short to medium term energy policy will not be happening and renewable energy should be the main concern. Given the recent development such bold and literal statement will come as welcome relieve to many supplier, contractors and investors within the market. However as in politics no MP’s word can be taken as a decided and passed policy.
The Government Will Be Investing Heavily Into Shale
These were essentially the remarks from the Prime Minister recently when ineffective the industry received the green light from the EU Commission to develop the market. With many within the conservative party seeing the potential of immediate gain as a sure fire way to increase job opportunity, increase government GDP and decrease energy bills.
Caution Favors The Brave
As with any gold rush the people that plan there approach will always prosper best. The real point here being that UK would be best served evaluating the industry fully before immersing itself in large scale shale proliferation. Realizing what we already have in renewable technology and what an asset the UK market actually is to UK economy could be the best way forward for all involved.
Will A Future Of Renewable Energy And Shale Be The Best Approach
Potentially analysts and spectators are describing this as the best approach for the market. The reason behind this thinking is firstly the UK is already committed to large scale investment in renewable energy and so a blanket pulling of funding will not be an option. Secondly the UK is quickly turning into a market leader within the industry so any look to halt the progress will effect GDP and talent flow within ther country and no country wants to loose it’s leading professionals to potentially profit those overseas. Finally and conversely the potential and momentum of shale gas is not going to stop or retreat it is only going to grow the reason being is the factors that the current positives the renewable sector highlighted above is what shale gas will also be able to develop. The real agenda should be focused on a way of finding how the two energies can operate optimally in tandem.
Some previous related articles of interest:
Changes to Scottish laws and what this could mean to the longterm renewable energy sector
What the future holds for the FIT scheme
Solar v pensions what comes out on top