Britain's new prime minister has promised to lift a ban on fracking “within days” of taking office in a bid to boost U.K. fuel supplies as the country slips into a deepening energy crisis. Liz Truss has also vowed to issue more licenses for North Sea drilling.
Kevin Krausert is CEO and co-founder of Avatar Innovations, a Calgary-based venture capital firm and startup accelerator that pairs entrepreneurs with the biggest companies in Canada’s energy patch. He’s optimistic about the U.K’s. off-shore potential, while skeptical that fracking will yield meaningful supply gains.
“There’s not a lot of land-producing energy in the U.K., and there hasn’t ever been,” Krausert told Yahoo Finance Canada’s Editor’s Edition. “It’s clearly, obviously political theatre.”
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Jeff Lagerquist is a senior reporter at Yahoo Finance Canada. Follow him on Twitter @jefflagerquist.
JEFF LAGERQUIST: Liz Truss, the new UK prime minister, newly minted just very shortly ago, has talked about lifting a ban on fracking in that country and issuing more North Sea drilling licenses. I mean, is this more politics, as you said before, or could there be a meaningful impact to the European energy market from this?
KEVIN KRAUSERT: Well, I'd like to figure out where she thinks the shale oil or gas play on-- on surface in the UK is that she can-- that the removal of a fracking ban is going to have any impact. There's-- there's not a lot of land producing energy in the-- in the UK and hasn't ever been. Where it is is in offshore. They don't frack in offshore.
So, you know, on the first piece-- piece of the equation, it's-- it's clearly, obviously political theater, as much political theater as it was when they banned fracking in the first place, because you can ban something you're not doing. It's-- you know, what effect does that have? On the issuing of-- of new offshore licenses, you know, you've seen Norway come to the table in a big way by increasing their gas supply to Europe.
And, you know, I think it's-- it's probably about time the-- the UK comes to this. We have to stop hamstringing the responsible oil-producing jurisdictions of the world like Canada, like the US, like Norway, like-- like the UK, and just cede over market share to countries that are weaponizing energy and are, frankly, far less concerned about net-zero implications. So, you know, broadly speaking, I'd have to see more details, but I think it makes some sense to expand offshore drilling in the-- in the UK.