U.S.: It’s Got Gas

Is the United States running out of natural gas?

No way, says the U.S. Energy Information Administration, which estimates that the U.S. has 211 trillion cubic feet ( tcf ) of proved reserves – gas that is already discovered and economically recoverable – and another 1533 tcf of technically recoverable natural gas.

Much of the technically recoverable gas is unconventional — shale gas, tight sands, and coalbed methane. It accounts for 60% of the onshore recoverable resource.

All this adds up to a lot. The U.S. produces about 19.3 tcf a year of natural gas. At that rate, the U.S. has enough natural gas to last 90 years. Less conservative estimates of the potential for shale gas add another 26 years to the potential U.S. supply, or 116 years.

These latest estimates can be found in a just released study, Modern Shale Gas Development in the United States: A Primer.

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