https://www.engineeringnews.co.za

South Africa needs more shale gas data – report

12th October 2016

By: Natasha Odendaal

Creamer Media Senior Deputy Editor

  

Font size: - +

A new report, commissioned by the Department of Science and Technology (DST), has found South Africa lacking sufficient comprehensive baseline studies to support the development of a shale gas industry in the country.

Presenting the consensus report titled ‘South Africa’s technical readiness to support the shale gas industry’, the study’s panel chairperson and University of Cape Town Professor Cyril O’Connor indicated that significant further research, studies and evaluations were required prior to the country embarking on the path of development of controversial shale gas.

The study, reviewing the technical readiness of South Africa to support a shale gas industry in the Karoo, was published on Wednesday by the Academy of Science of South Africa in conjunction with the South African Academy of Engineering.

The report, commissioned in 2014, had passed through Cabinet on September 28.

“We are in virgin territory, so to speak, of the development of shale gas,” O’Connor said, urging caution on the development of an industry that will require “strict compliance” and best practice.

However, this also meant the country had an opportunity to “do it correctly”, with indications that the development of shale gas could be done safely and securely with suitable legislation in place, he told stakeholders at the launch of the report at the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research in Pretoria.

“As soon as possible, there should be an intervention to begin [a rigorous and comprehensive set of] baseline studies,” O’Connor commented.

Thorough and detailed understandings of the baseline conditions on and in the ground are required, and, apart from technical studies, should be supplemented by an assessment of the socioeconomic impact on and status of the indigenous population, all of which should be considered along with a variety of independent scientific data pre- and post-implementation phases.

“A key recommendation is that relevant departments, with DST oversight, should initiate a major project to undertake, prior to the commencement of shale gas exploration/exploitation, robust multidisciplinary, regional and local baseline studies,” the report highlighted.

An economic implications assessment must be undertaken to “critically assess” the supply-demand situation, with emphasis on an extensive and comprehensive public consultation and engagement process with local communities in the Karoo.

The report also determined that “much needs to be done” to put in place a clear legislative framework and rigorous regulatory and monitoring structures, to continuously and accurately monitor the key elements in the industry.

“[This] will ensure that operators, in using their exploration and production licences, apply best practice technologies that are fully compliant with the rules and regulations governing the industry.”

Other interventions include the development of the requisite skills and infrastructure required for the sustainability of such an industry.

Edited by Creamer Media Reporter

Comments

 

Showroom

ESAB showroom image
ESAB South Africa

ESAB South Arica, the leading supplier of high-end welding and cutting products to the Southern African industrial market is based in...

VISIT SHOWROOM 
Victaulic
Victaulic

Since 1919, Victaulic’s innovative solutions and design services continue to increase construction productivity and reduce risk, ensuring projects...

VISIT SHOWROOM 

Latest Multimedia

sponsored by

Option 1 (equivalent of R125 a month):

Receive a weekly copy of Creamer Media's Engineering News & Mining Weekly magazine
(print copy for those in South Africa and e-magazine for those outside of South Africa)
Receive daily email newsletters
Access to full search results
Access archive of magazine back copies
Access to Projects in Progress
Access to ONE Research Report of your choice in PDF format

Option 2 (equivalent of R375 a month):

All benefits from Option 1
PLUS
Access to Creamer Media's Research Channel Africa for ALL Research Reports, in PDF format, on various industrial and mining sectors including Electricity; Water; Energy Transition; Hydrogen; Roads, Rail and Ports; Coal; Gold; Platinum; Battery Metals; etc.

Already a subscriber?

Forgotten your password?

MAGAZINE & ONLINE

SUBSCRIBE

RESEARCH CHANNEL AFRICA

SUBSCRIBE

CORPORATE PACKAGES

CLICK FOR A QUOTATION







sq:0.281 0.334s - 174pq - 6rq
Subscribe Now