Shale gas in Egypt

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While there have been shale gas reserves identified across much of North Africa, the majority are concentrated in Algeria, Libya and Tunisia. Shale gas in Egypt is somewhat marginal, according to a 2012 Ernst & Young report.[1] The production of unconventional gas, which includes shale, is still in its formative years, but could account for nearly half of the increase in global gas production by 2035, according to the International Energy Agency (IEA). However, there are uncertainties around the environmental impact of unconventional gas production, which could slow the industry's growth.[2]

In particular, the drilling method known as 'fracking', or hydraulic fracturing, which taps into extremely deep shale gas reserves, is highly controversial in Egypt and elsewhere.[3] In late 2012, Egypt Independent reported on the case of the village of Fares in Upper Egypt, which had suffered from water contamination by the controversial oil drilling practice which Dana Gas, a gas company headquartered in the United Arab Emirates, has been using to operate wells in the area.[4]


  1. "Natural gas in Africa" Ernst&Young, 2012.
  2. "World Energy Outlook 2012 - Executive Summary" International Energy Agency, 2012.
  3. "Are oil and gas companies fracking up Egypt's environment?" Egypt Independent, 21 October 2012.
  4. "Is fracking responsible for the flooding of an Upper Egyptian village?" Egypt Independent, 29 December 2013.