Poland's Shale Gas Industry Hit by Corruption Scandal

World | January 11, 2012, Wednesday // 12:09|  views

According to a US study, Poland has shale gas deposits which could cover its natural gas needs for up to 300 years. Photo by BGNES

Seven people suspected of bribery related to the granting of shale gas exploration licenses were detained by Polish internal security agency ABW on Tuesday.

"The seven people include three Environment Ministry officials, one from the Polish Geological Institute and three businessmen representing companies holding licenses for shale gas exploration," ABW said in a statement, as cited by the Warsaw Business Journal, without specifying the names of the firms involved.

In mid-April, a report published by the United States Energy Information Administration (EIA) revealed that Poland's shale-gas reserves were more substantial than previous assessments had suggested.

EIA's analysis estimated Poland's shale gas reserves at 5.3 trillion cubic meters.

Besides local companies like PGNiG, Lotos and PKN Orlen, Poland's shale gas development industry has attracted global giants like Chevron, Exxon Mobil and Marathon Oil.

Polish authorities have issued more than 100 licenses for the exploration of local unconventional gas deposits in the hope that production starts in 2014, bringing fresh money into the state budget and reducing dependence on gas imports from Russia.

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Tags: shale gas, shale gas exploration, bribery, Chevron


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