• 2 days Iraq Begins To Rebuild Largest Refinery
  • 2 days Canadian Producers Struggle To Find Transport Oil Cargo
  • 2 days Venezuela’s PDVSA Makes $539M Interest Payments On Bonds
  • 2 days China's CNPC Considers Taking Over South Pars Gas Field
  • 2 days BP To Invest $200 Million In Solar
  • 2 days Tesla Opens New Showroom In NYC
  • 2 days Petrobras CEO Hints At New Partner In Oil-Rich Campos Basin
  • 2 days Venezuela Sells Oil Refinery Stake To Cuba
  • 3 days Tesla Is “Headed For A Brick Wall”
  • 3 days Norwegian Pension Fund Set to Divest From Oil Sands and Coal Ventures
  • 3 days IEA: “2018 Might Not Be Quite So Happy For OPEC Producers”
  • 3 days Goldman Bullish On Oil Markets
  • 3 days OPEC Member Nigeria To Issue Africa’s First Sovereign Green Bond
  • 3 days Nigeria To Spend $1B Of Oil Money Fighting Boko Haram
  • 3 days Syria Aims To Begin Offshore Gas Exploration In 2019
  • 3 days Australian Watchdog Blocks BP Fuel Station Acquisition
  • 4 days Colombia Boosts Oil & Gas Investment
  • 4 days Environmentalists Rev Up Anti-Keystone XL Angst Amongst Landowners
  • 4 days Venezuelan Default Swap Bonds At 19.25 Cents On The Dollar
  • 4 days Aramco On The Hunt For IPO Global Coordinators
  • 4 days ADNOC Distribution Jumps 16% At Market Debut In UAE
  • 4 days India Feels the Pinch As Oil Prices Rise
  • 4 days Aramco Announces $40 Billion Investment Program
  • 4 days Top Insurer Axa To Exit Oil Sands
  • 5 days API Reports Huge Crude Draw
  • 5 days Venezuela “Can’t Even Write A Check For $21.5M Dollars.”
  • 5 days EIA Lowers 2018 Oil Demand Growth Estimates By 40,000 Bpd
  • 5 days Trump Set To Open Atlantic Coast To Oil, Gas Drilling
  • 5 days Norway’s Oil And Gas Investment To Drop For Fourth Consecutive Year
  • 5 days Saudis Plan To Hike Gasoline Prices By 80% In January
  • 5 days Exxon To Start Reporting On Climate Change Effect
  • 6 days US Geological Survey To Reevaluate Bakken Oil Reserves
  • 6 days Brazil Cuts Local Content Requirements to Attract Oil Investors
  • 6 days Forties Pipeline Could Remain Shuttered For Weeks
  • 6 days Desjardins Ends Energy Loan Moratorium
  • 6 days ADNOC Distribution IPO Valuation Could Be Lesson For Aramco
  • 6 days Russia May Turn To Cryptocurrencies For Oil Trade
  • 6 days Iraq-Iran Oil Swap Deal To Run For 1 Year
  • 9 days Venezuelan Crude Exports To U.S. Fall To 15-year Lows
  • 9 days Mexico Blames Brazil For Failing Auction

Breaking News:

Iraq Begins To Rebuild Largest Refinery

Alt Text

'Perfect Storm' Wreaks Havoc On Europe’s Energy Market

The combination of several unexpected…

Alt Text

Russia Aims To Challenge Qatar LNG Dominance

Russia has launched a $27-billion…

Daniel J. Graeber

Daniel J. Graeber

Daniel Graeber is a writer and political analyst based in Michigan. His work on matters related to the geopolitical aspects of the global energy sector,…

More Info

Polish Shale Ambitions Fine Without Exxon

Polish Shale Ambitions Fine Without Exxon

Exxon Mobil this week said it was abandoning its shale natural gas ambitions in Poland. Warsaw aims to tap into its shale deposits in an effort to break the Russian grip on the natural gas sector. The country recently scaled back its shale reserve estimate, however, and is set to unveil a new series of laws governing the emerging sector. Nevertheless, the move by Exxon did little to shake other explorers like Chevron, and with Exxon moving closer to Russian developments, its departure from Poland isn't the end to the shale story there.

The U.S. Energy Department's Energy Information Administration had estimated that Poland could hold as much as 5.3 trillion cubic meters of natural gas. That would be enough for the country to satisfy domestic demand for the next 300 years, effectively cutting the Kremlin out of Warsaw once and for all. A Polish review of shale deposits revealed in March, however, that the reserve estimate was closer to 550 billion cubic meters on average.

Though acrimony from the Cold War era lingers in Warsaw, the Polish energy sector remains heavily dependent on Russia for oil and natural gas. Officials at Russian natural gas monopoly Gazprom shrugged off the shale bonanza by saying Polish natural gas would be an expensive commodity for potential consumers. At the same time, however, Gazprom said that its own natural gas designated for the South Stream natural gas pipeline was a secure source despite what it expects to be an expensive resource.

Poland has doled out more than 100 shale exploration licenses to international oil companies like Exxon and Chevron. While Exxon said it was leaving, authorities at Chevron said they were moving ahead as planned. Chevron, working in southeast Poland, said it was evaluating the results from two exploratory wells and remained committed to its work in the country. Exxon in February, however, said two of its shale natural gas wells in Poland weren't commercially viable.

Shale is an emerging phenomenon. The geology was sidelined until roughly 20 years ago when new drilling practices gave explorers optimism about the resource potential. Now, the United States is the shale natural gas leader, something that wasn't the case when Poland was weighed down by Iron Curtain. Exxon, before announcing it was leaving Poland, moved closer to Russia's Rosneft in arctic shale oil deposits, which could be on par with the massive Bakken shale deposit in North Dakota. While explorers eying shale reserves in Poland may be cautious given pending laws governing taxation and environmental issues, it's premature to say Exxon's departure is a significant blow to Warsaw's shale ambitions. Countries like France and Bulgaria have banned shale developments on environmental concerns, meaning Poland is open for business. The Polish shale story will continue even without Exxon.

By. Daniel Graeber of Oilprice.com




Back to homepage


Leave a comment
  • al lindner on June 20 2012 said:
    I smell Putin's influence with Exxon's decision, trying to make shale gas exploration in Poland look unattractive.

    Development of shale gas resources in Europe is Putin's worst nightmare!

    I hope Chevron is very successful in their Polish exploration program.

Leave a comment




Oilprice - The No. 1 Source for Oil & Energy News