Chevron has started exploration drilling into shale gas deposits in Pungesti, Vaslui county, eastern Romania. The company said drilling is performed responsibly and with regard to the environment, according to zf.ro.
“Various measurements and rock samples will be taken to determine if natural gas is present and how it may be produced,” Chevron said in a statement, quoted by Reuters.
Chevron obtained a permit to drill for shale gas in October 2013 and started works on the drilling platform in December, a month and a half later than planned because of protests.
Chevron has permits to explore for shale gas in northeastern Romania as well as on Romania’s Black Sea coast. Despite local opposition, the company started to build its first exploration well in the village of Pungesti five months ago. Chevron Romania has three more environmental permits to explore shale gas in Vaslui county.
The U.S. Energy Information Administration estimates Romania could potentially hold 51 trillion cubic feet of shale gas, which would cover domestic demand for more than a century.
Chevron is the first company that has started to seek shale gas in Romania as the government lifted an informal memorandum that banned any developments in this field this year.
PM Ponta has said on numerous occasions that shale gas would allow Romania to cut its dependency on expensive gas imports from Russia.
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