With world demand continuing to rise for natural gas, investments in infrastructure are growing for the shale gas industry, which is expected to reach 12.6TcF (Trillion Cubic Feet) by 2020, tripling its current output.
According to a report by energy research publisher SBI Energy, shale gas production in the U.S. increased at an annual rate of 48% from 2006-2010, reaching 4.8Tcf and representing 23% of the total U.S. natural gas production.
After several prudent years due to uncertainty regarding reserve estimates and production-related risks, shale gas processing assets are now regarded as an attractive form of investment. An increase in gas and natural gas liquid products from these shale plays over recent years has led to billions of dollars worth of investments in gas processing infrastructure.
“Investments in shale gas from the midstream sector reached over $7.7 billion in shale gas processing infrastructure, including $3.8 billion plus spent on equipment and components alone in 2010,” noted Shelly Carr, Publisher of SBI Energy. “This market is being driven by a growing demand for natural gas.”
The current market for shale gas processing equipment and components is limited to the North American continent, specifically in the United States and Canada. While the U.S. market has grown exponentially over the past five years, production increases are also occurring in Canada, where unconventional gas accounted for 25% of the country’s natural gas production in 2010.
“Since technological advancements have made shale gas production economically viable, all major natural gas producers in North America have turned their attention to shale plays,” added Carr.
The report, Shale Processing Equipment and Component Manufacturing Markets Worldwide, contains comprehensive data on the gas processing equipment and components market, as well as segment forecasts through 2020. It also analyzes key trends and profiles major manufacturers and product end-users.