The Impact of the “Shale Gas Revolution” on the United Kingdom Electricity Generation Outlook

By Henry Sithole, Timothy Cockerill, Ray Edmunds, Kevin J Hughes, Lin Ma, Richard Porter and Mohamed Pourkashanian.

Published by The International Journal of Environmental Sustainability

Format Price
Article: Print $US10.00
Published online: December 2, 2015 $US5.00

The prospects of UK shale gas development and its role in the energy mix has generated contradictory views. Its inclusion in electricity generation is anticipated to help mitigate the grid carbon emissions. However, there is fear that a shale gas “revolution” might distract policy commitments on the development of low carbon technologies. Others argue that a shale gas “boom” could potentially create a “lock-in-effect” on the gas generation infrastructure, thus, further exacerbating the burden on carbon emissions. The uncertainty over the future role of shale gas is worsened by lack of clarity and conflicting estimates on the potential gas resource and reserves. In the midst of these uncertainties, this paper seeks to examine transition pathways incorporating shale gas and their implications on electricity sector decarbonisation and energy security objectives.

Keywords: Decarbonisation, Low-carbon Technologies, Unconventional Gas, Energy Scenarios, Carbon Capture, Storage

The International Journal of Environmental Sustainability, Volume 11, Issue 4, December 2015, pp.1-20. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Published online: December 2, 2015 (Article: Electronic (PDF File; 1.304MB)).

Henry Sithole

Research Student, Faculty of Engineering, The University of Sheffield, Leeds, South Yorkshire, UK

Timothy Cockerill

Professor, Centre for Integrated Energy Research, University of Leeds, Leeds, UK

Ray Edmunds

University of Leeds

Kevin J Hughes

The University of Sheffield

Lin Ma

The University of Sheffield

Richard Porter

Research Fellow, Energy Technology and Innovation Initiative, University of Leeds, Leeds, UK

Mohamed Pourkashanian

The University of Sheffield