Cuadrilla in Shale Gas Farm-In Talks

Cuadrilla in Shale Gas Farm-In Talks

A major investor in UK shale gas firm Cuadrilla Resources announced Friday that it is in discussions regarding a potential farm-in deal connected to Cuadrilla's Bowland shale license in Lancashire in northern England.

Responding to press speculation, AJ Lucas Group confirmed to the Australia Securities Exchange (where its shares are listed) that it was in talks but would not reveal the other parties involved. According to its Web site, AJ Lucas holds a 42-percent equity interest in Cuadrilla and has invested some $73 million in the company since it began operations in 2007. 

Dow Jones Newswires reported that the UK's Centrica – a major integrated utility focused on gas – is in the frame and that the talks are at an "advanced" stage.

So far in the UK no commercial shale gas production has taken place, but Cuadrilla is planning to begin the hydraulic fracture of wells in the Bowland shale next year once it has completed a series of environmental impact assessments.  In March, Cuadrilla Development Director Mark Miller told Rigzone that the two wells planned by September 2014 will be for testing purposes only. Beyond then, the firm plans to drill a number of commercial shale gas wells.

Cuadrilla's license area within the Bowland shale has been estimated to hold up to 300 trillion cubic feet of gas, according to the British Geological Survey.

A former engineer, Jon is an award-winning editor who has covered the technology, engineering and energy sectors since the mid-1990s. Email Jon at


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