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New natural gas sources needed to meet increasing demand

Territories like the Middle East have been formulating strategies to solve the growing demand.

The current portfolio of gas fields will not meet global demand, even in the cases of 1.9 and 2.5 degrees Celsius warming and the immediate growth of renewables, giving rise to the need to accelerate unconventional gas supply growth, according to a Rystad Energy report.

Rystad said natural gas demand around the world is expected to rise in the next decade, leading to a 12.5% surge in production from 2023 to 2030.

Alternatives, like shale and other unconventional gases, have seen rapid growth in recent years, leading to an increase in time to achieve production, from 4% in 2000 to 12% in 2022 and 35% in 2023. This influx, along with the advancement of technologies and push for unconventional sources, is affecting the supply and exploration of natural gas.

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“Gas is increasingly considered a crucial stepping stone to a sustainable future. With reduced emissions and regional energy security goals aligned, gas is poised to play a pivotal role in the global energy transition. The Middle East is a key driver of this shift, slowly moving into developing and increasing gas volumes as part of their new energy transition strategies," Aatisha Mahajan, Vice President of Exploration for Rystad Energy, said.

Gas-rich locations such Middle East, where basins like Rub al Khali, are one of the locations seen to bridge the gap in the supply as it is expected to provide an estimated 20 million tons per annum of LNG by 2020 to meet the demand. The region is also maximising its gas volumes to succeed in its energy transition plans. 

Saudi Arabia is leading the transition from oil extraction to natural gas production. Rystad said the Kingdom is mapping out newer strategies to match the demand, like boosting production on non-associated gas fields and investing $100b such as on the Jafurah field – the most extensive liquids-rich shale gas reserve in the Middle East.

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