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Fracking in the U.K.: Britain Looks to Boost Shale Gas

Engineers at work on the drilling platform of the Cuadrilla shale fracking facility on October 7, 2011 in Preston, Lancashire
Engineers at work on the drilling platform of the Cuadrilla shale fracking facility on October 7, 2011 in Preston, LancashirePhotograph by Matthew Lloyd/Getty Images

Could a European shale-gas revolution start in Britain? While efforts to drill gas from shale deposits have stalled on the Continent, the British government could soon give the go-ahead to drilling and provide tax breaks to encourage it.

Chancellor of the Exchequer George Osborne, scheduled to unveil a new government energy plan on Dec. 5, has said he wants to ensure that “Britain is not left behind” the U.S., where a shale-gas boom has dramatically lowered prices and ended the country’s dependence on imported gas.