Shale Explorer Farms Into Scottish Power Area in North England

Egdon Resources Plc, a U.K. shale explorer, has agreed to evaluate the potential of energy resources in Scottish Power Ltd.’s licenses in northern England.

The work in licenses PL161 and PL162, which Egdon will undertake at its own cost and risk, involves analyzing seismic and well data, the Odiham, England-based company said today in a statement. Should the data look promising, Egdon has the option to drill an exploration well, gaining a 50 percent working interest and becoming operator.

Egdon’s licenses PEDL139 and PEDL140, which it has identified as having “significant” shale gas potential, sit near Scottish Power’s acreage.

“We recognize this area -- the Gainsborough Trough -- as promising,” Mark Abbott, Egdon’s managing director, said in a telephone interview.

Scottish Power, owned by Iberdrola SA of Spain, is the third utility to examine the potential of the country’s shale resources, estimated at 1,300 trillion cubic feet of gas in the Bowland basin in the north. That’s enough to meet demand for almost 50 years at an extraction rate of 10 percent, similar to U.S. fields.

Earlier this year, Centrica Plc bought a 25 percent stake in Cuadrilla Resources Ltd.’s Bowland acreage and France’s GDF Suez purchased assets from Dart Energy Ltd.

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