+ What is natural gas used for?

Natural gas is a clean burning, efficient and versatile resource with a wide array of uses. It provides energy for our homes and businesses, generating heat and electricity. It is an important component for a number of industries including pharmaceuticals, electronics, steel, plastics and automotive. Natural gas is also suitable for use in association with renewable energy sources, such as wind or solar.

+ What are the economic benefits of unconventional resources?

As demonstrated in North America, the oil and gas industry creates jobs and new revenue sources.

In Canada, the oil and gas sector is a major contributor to the Canadian economy, currently contributing more than 500,000 direct and indirect jobs across the country. The Canadian Energy Research Institute anticipates that the oil and gas industry will contribute more than $3.5 trillion to the Canadian economy over the next 25 years. (Source: Natural Resources Canada www.nrcan.gc.ca).

The Barnett Shale in Texas has been so successful that the natural gas industry created 100,268 local jobs in the city of Fort Worth and now makes up 8.5% of the local economy. (Source: Impact of the Barnett Shale on Business Activity, The Perryman Group, 2011).

In 2011, for the first time since 1949, the US became a net exporter of refined petroleum products.

+ What are the environmental benefits of natural gas?

The environmental impact of the natural-gas boom is already perceptible in the US. The greenhouse gas emissions were 9% lower than in 2007, mainly due to the fact that natural gas is replacing coal as an energy source. It is clean burning and emits half as much carbon dioxide as coal.

In the effort to boost renewable energy sources such as wind and solar, natural gas acts as a companion fuel, bridging the gap and facilitating the transition.

+ Where do you see shale gas fitting into the energy mix picture in Europe?

The key benefit of shale gas is that it has the potential to ensure energy security for Europe through new local energy supplies. This will reduce dependence on gas supplies from other foreign suppliers and lower the cost and volatility of energy to local consumers.