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Brazilian minister defends shale gas exploration

  • Market: Natural gas
  • 19/06/24

Brazil's mines and energy minister Alexandre Silveira defended exploring shale gas in the country in an address to the lower house of congress.

Silveira proposed integrating Brazil's energy resources with those of neighboring countries, especially Argentina, which boasts an estimated 308 Tcf of gas reserves, according to the US Energy Information Administration. He also urged discussions regarding unconventional gas exploration in Brazil.

"It makes little sense for us to continue importing unconventional gas from the US after more than five decades," Silveira said. "Meanwhile, we hesitate to explore similar resources within our own borders because of unclear reasons."

Mato Grosso and Bahia states are currently discussing exploring shale gas by hydraulic fracking, while Parana and Santa Catarina states have regulation in place.

More supply, lower prices

Silveira once again stressed the need to increase gas supply and decrease prices.

"Currently, 35pc of our chemical industry is not operating in full capacity because of insufficient gas supply and excessively high prices compared with international rates," he said. "We must explore all avenues to meet demand."

This is not the first time Silveira calls for lower gas prices to push Brazil's industrialization, one of the federal government's main objectives.

Brazil needs to hold a secure, sustainable approach to energy exploration while maintaining its energy sovereignty, Silveira said. For that, it needs to leverage all of its available energy resources, despite having an 88pc clean energy matrix.

"We cannot afford to overlook our potential," Silveira said. "Renouncing any option would be a disservice to our nation."


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