EU law enough for now to regulate shale gas, study says

Shales gas could liberate Europe from dependence on Putin-controlled Russian gas.

Reuters reports,

EU law is enough for now to regulate shale gas exploration, although changes might be needed to protect the environment once Europe enters the development phase, a study commissioned by the EU found.

Shale gas exploitation in the United States has transformed the global supply-demand balance.

In Europe, however, development is less advanced and EU member states Bulgaria and France have banned shale gas activity because of environmental concerns.

“The legal study confirms that there is no immediate need for changing our EU legislation. This refers to the actual phase of exploration,” Energy Commissioner Guenther Oettinger said in a statement on Friday to accompany publication of the survey.

“We take environmental concerns seriously and will continue to monitor the development of shale gas extraction in the EU.”

The energy mix is the prerogative of member states and only they can decide on implementing a ban.

But the European Union has the power to tighten relevant EU laws or introduce new ones…