Natural gas faces several challenges to its full development and deployment to address the world’s environmental issues. First, there have to be stable enough markets to develop sufficient infrastructure and to incent sufficient drilling for the gas to come forth when it’s needed. Second, of course, shale gas development involves hydraulic fracturing, which is engendering enough public and political concern that resolution of the issues around it has become essential to its unimpaired long-term use. Third, the role of natural gas as the cleanest fossil fuel and potential major contributor to the reduction of man-made greenhouse gases has been challenged in a recent report.
A recent report claims that the full-cycle greenhouse gas emissions of shale gas exceeds those of coal. Navigant Director Rick Smead finds that the report’s conclusions are based on faulty data or assumptions, and are therefore misleading, and that the assertions made by the report should not impair the robust development of the nation’s abundant natural gas resource.