French Govt Open to Explore Shale Gas Extraction

The French government is open to explore shale gas extraction in France, French daily le Figaro reports Wednesday, a few days ahead of a government-led conference on the country's energy mix.

The government could announce at its energy conference the creation of an ad-hoc commission to consider an experiment in shale gas extraction, the newspaper reports, citing a person close to the conference.

No one at the environment and energy ministry was immediately available to comment.

Shale gas, or natural gas trapped in hard shale rock, is extracted through hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, a method involving the injection of water, chemicals and sand into the rocks at a high pressure to release the gas.

The method has been banned in France since last year after an intense public campaign by environmentalists who warned of potential pollution to water tables and damage to the landscape.

Copyright (c) 2012 Dow Jones & Company, Inc.


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