Is Wales sitting on commercial gas reserves worth billions?

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A shale gas field comparable to some of the largest in the world could be trapped beneath the coal fields of South Wales, a report has found.

An Australian exploration firm which holds several licences to exploit the gas reserves trapped in the shale rocks deep beneath the UK believes the reserves in Wales are far larger than previously thought.

Eden Energy’s studies suggest that the quantity of gas would be equivalent to the amount needed to meet the UK’s gas use for four years.

Shale gas is controversial as the method of extraction is complicated and has been accused by campaigners in the United States of polluting water supplies.

The company’s chairman Greg Soloman described the gas field under South Wales as potentially “colossal”.

The potential value, if the company’s estimate is proven to be accurate, could be as high as £70bn at current market prices.
“This has got the potential to literally transform the Welsh economy – no question at all. We’re talking about potentially huge quantities of gas,” Mr Solomon said.

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