Minister Mazuronis: “The energy resources stored in shale is a gift to Lithuania”2013-03-07
On his working visit to the USA Minister Valentinas Mazuronis met with chair of the Energy and Mineral Resources Subcommittee of the Natural Resources Committee of the House of Representatives of the Congress, Doug Lamborn from Colorado, member of the Committee on Energy and Commerce of the House of Representatives and co-chair of the Baltic Group, John Shimkus and had a discussion with the State Department’s Special Envoy and Coordinator for International Energy Affairs, Ambassador Carlos Pascual.
Mr Mazuronis pointed out that support from the United States and its experience were of utmost importance for Lithuania in order to develop extraction of gas contained in shale rock efficiently. “We hope to create a favourable environment for foreign investors and at the same time to work closely with the local communities. Extraction of shale gas must be equally beneficial to land owners, the local community and the state. We need to focus on the goal that the outcome is useful for all,” said the Minister.
He added that it was important to take into account that the USA has extracted shale gas and oil for several decades now, technologies have developed significantly, and the local government, the communities and the companies have already found common language. “Hence today we can see that gas extracted from shale makes up 25 per cent of the US gas market,” said Mr Mazuronis.
Influential congressmen pointed out that the US State administrations, experts, environmentalists and gas companies are continuously looking for new forms of cooperation and improving the legal environment and supervisory mechanisms in extracting hydrocarbons from shale rock.
Congressmen say the new technology had allowed creating new jobs in the regions, private energy companies have contributed in setting up schools and in improving the infrastructure, have built a dialogue with the local communities and have encouraged the self-government authorities to take a more pro-active role in cooperating with energy companies and to regularly upgrade technologies of extracting and monitoring the underground resources.
According to Mr Lamborn, the resources contained in shale are a great gift to the state and to the local community, so Lithuania should be happy if shale gas is found in its soil and can be extracted in a safe, efficient and profitable way. The congressman maintains it could enable our country to ensure security from its great neighbour and from its gas.
The Minister was visiting the USA at the invitation of the Lithuanian Embassy in the US. Today the Minister and his escorting delegation are scheduled to visit the Marcellus Center for Outreach and Research of Penn State University, whose experts, local government, community and business representatives will introduce the practice of extracting shale gas at the Marcellus Shale.
Information of the Ministry of Environment, tel. 219 1868
7 March 2013