Millennium Post

Bengal executes agreement for exploration of shale gas

Bengal executes agreement for exploration of shale gas

Kolkata: The state government announced that it has executed a lease agreement for the exploration and mining of shale gas with the Great Eastern Energy Corporation Limited (GEECL). The lease will enable GEECL to mine for shale gas in the Raniganj area of West Burdwan. Shale gas mining is expected to bring an investment of about Rs 15,000 crore. This is in addition to a further investment envisaged in the GEECL's continuing CBM programme of Rs 1,500 crore.

Bengal has a huge potential in shale gas resources and the agreement will create further ancillary industries and will generate thousands of new employment opportunities for the local youth. It will boost industrial activities by providing clear and cheaper energy and also help in substantial growth in the transportation sector. It was also stated that a similar lease will be signed with the ESSAR group for shale exploration in the Durgapur region. The target is set to bring about an investment of about Rs 7,000 crore and is expected to create more than 5,000 jobs directly and 1,000 indirect employment opportunities. The two shale gas mining projects will generate an investment of about Rs 22,000 crore and thousands of jobs. Around 6.63 TCF shale gas is expected to be excavated from GEECL's Raniganj block. This project will also provide an alternative and cleaner source of energy and also improve the air quality of the region.

Prashant Modi, Managing Director & CEO of Great Eastern, said: "We are thrilled to achieve this significant milestone by executing an amendment to our PML and will now commence our shale programme. Given the large potential shale gas resource in our Raniganj (South) block of up to 6.63 TCF of original gas in place, it provides an exciting and excellent growth opportunity for the company."

The GAIL pipeline installation is in progress and it offers the company the ability to deliver additional future production volumes to new customers and markets. There has been an increasing demand for natural gas both in India and globally.

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