The race for new-energy dominance is officially on.
Sinopec and Cnoon, two of China’s oil giants, announced earlier this month that they will seek to buy a 30 percent stake in American hydraulic-fracturing-services firm Frac Tech Holdings LLC.
There is a storm of great excitement about the natural gas development in the United States. This could potentially touch off a competition worth up to $2 billion. Furthermore, this possesses enormous implications for the global energy industry and the still-struggling U.S. economy.
China has nearly 50 percent more recoverable shale gas than the United States, yet in 2009 we took the spot of number-one natural-gas producer in the world.
How does this work?
What countries like China & Saudi Arabia lack in technique and expertise we make up for tenfold. More that fifty years ago Americans pioneered hydraulic fracturing, a process whereby a high-pressured, water-based mixture is pumped into underground shale to release hydrocarbons.
Countries like China and Saudi Arabia are very rich in coal and oil, however, they are keenly interested in the American energy-extraction methods which would imply that the tables have finally turned.
The studies also found that increased production would reduce natural gas expenses as $11.6 billion annually. Furthermore, the domestic shale gas consumption will exponentially triple by 2035. Add to that the substantial amount to be made domestically and overseas by American manufacturers of shale-gas-related equipment. This is a chance the Financial Times recently called a, “major export opportunity,” and we could see a significant uptick in jobs and general economic activity in certain sectors.
The U.S. has the tools and the motive to increase natural gas drilling full force. Its time we did so before other nations with less know-how but more resources do so.