Is Shale Drilling Really the Answer to Lower Natural Gas Prices in North America

/ Source: GlobeNewswire

STAMFORD, Conn., Feb. 2, 2011 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- In recent years the discovery of new shale gas deposits and new drilling technology, such as hydraulic fracturing and horizontal drilling, have dramatically increased the United States natural gas reserves. The dramatic economic success of shale drilling has spurred similar development in other countries and helped decrease and stabilize the cost of natural gas in the United States.

However, the picture may not be as rosy as it seems. MXenergy, one of the nation's leading independent energy suppliers, cautions there are multiple factors which can still impact the price of natural gas, and in turn, the price of electricity production as well.

"While the shale gas reserves have represented a tremendous new source of natural gas for this country, it is important we do not become too optimistic," cautions Blas Pina, Director of Natural Gas for MXenergy. "A recent decline in conventional well production, an increasing international demand for natural gas and the high cost of rig operation have led to a delicate balance between supply and demand."

The discovery of new shale gas deposits in states such as Pennsylvania and Texas have been financial windfalls for those communities and caused many people to be highly optimistic regarding the cost of natural gas in the future.

"Although shale drilling has definitely represented an enormous new resource for natural gas, we still must not lose sight of continuing to search for more environmentally sustainable sources of energy," continues Pina. "Not only are there critical factors which can drive up the cost of gas but that in turn can have a negative impact on the cost of electricity as well."

In its 2011 Annual Energy Outlook, the US Energy Information Administration doubled its estimate of technically recoverable shale gas reserves and projected that by 2035 shale production will represent 45% of total US gas production.

About MXenergy

MXenergy is one of the fastest growing retail natural gas and electricity suppliers in North America, serving approximately 500,000 customers in 41 utility territories in the United States and Canada. For over 11 years, the company has provided millions of customers with a choice in how they purchase energy to run their homes and businesses.  Founded in 1999 to provide natural gas and electricity to consumers in deregulated energy markets, MXenergy helps residential customers and small business owners control their energy bills by providing both fixed and variable rate plans. MXenergy is committed to best practices in environmental conservation, supporting local communities through various outreach programs and is a member of the Chicago Climate Exchange.  For more information about MXenergy please visit

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