The Guardian usually takes a pretty strong stand on the green side of environmental issues. Its editors lambast politicians the world over for failing to do more to curb greenhouse gasses or to promote renewable energy, and its reporters often push a green agenda.But now even the Guardian is signing on to the energy revolution narrative that Via Meadia has been following for some time, reporting that “cheap energy from shale will reshape America’s role in the world“:
It’s been dubbed “the homecoming”. After decades in which the hollowing out of American manufacturing has been chronicled in Bruce Springsteen’s blue-collar laments, cheap energy is being seen as the dawn of a new golden age for the world’s biggest economy. . . .If all the known shale gas resources were developed to their commercial potential in North America and other new fields, production could more than quadruple over the next two decades, and account for more than half of US natural gas production by the early 2030s, according to recent study by the Harvard Kennedy School Belfer Centre.Pennsylvania – where the first oil well was drilled in 1859 – produced about 30m cubic metres (1bn cubic ft) of natural gas in 2008. By 2010, the state was producing 11bn cubic metres, helping to put the US on course to be the world’s biggest supplier of oil and gas within a decade.
The piece covers the geopolitical ramifications of the U.S. energy boom, which is already affecting the world’s current (soon to be former?) gas kings like Russia:
Russia is already feeling the direct impact of the new gas age. Development of its Shtokman field – believed to be one of the largest gas fields in the world – deep under the Barents Sea, has been shelved, because its intended customer, the US, now has its own home-grown source of natural gas. . . .Now, as more and more of the liquefied natural gas (LNG) formerly intended for the US finds its way on to the western market, the spot gas price is coming adrift of the oil price and the Europeans have new options, which will lessen their dependence on a single dominant seller.
We are seeing more and more analysts, politicians, and media outlets—even pro-green types like the Guardian—join the energy revolution bandwagon. Via Meadia will be watching.