Arrow Energy, the owner of the biggest reserves of gas trapped in seams of Australian coal, has been offered £2 billion by Royal Dutch Shell and PetroChina. The gas, principally methane, is a cleaner fuel than either coal or oil and has a much higher calorific output per unit mass at 57 GJ/tonne, compared with around 29 GJ/tonne for anthracitic coal and 42 GJ/tonne for oil. Shares for Arrow are up by around 50% on the Sydney Stock Exchange, promoted by the expectation of a higher bid from the two giants.
Arrow Energy also owns the Fisherman's Landing liquefied natural gas project in Queensland, one of ten of its type in Australia, and the Territorial government has predicted around 50 billion Australian Dollars in investment as a global competition ensues among companies keen to export the fuel to growing markets in Asia.
China has announced its intention to increase the use of gas as a fuel three-fold to provide around 10% of its total energy by 2020, as part of an aim to curb its use of coal. PetroChina is the greatest producer of oil and gas in China, and its CEO has said that it will make efforts to increase its holdings of liquid natural gas, including that derived from gas physically trapped in coal.
A Shanghai-based energy analyst, Shi Yan is quoted as saying: "It appears that this bid is in its early stages, but it's part of China's efforts to sure supply." And this is true of all sources of energy, in nations across the world.
"Shell and PetroChina swoop on Arrow Energy for its gas reserves." http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/newsbysector/energy/oilandgas/7396432/Shell-and-PetroChina-swoop-on-Arrow-Energy-for-its-gas-reserves.html