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Demand for gas will rise by over 50% says IEA

For the past few years industry executives have been talking up natural gas. Excited by the possibilities of a hydrocarbon that is, thanks to shale, considered globally abundant, relatively clean to burn, and easy to ship, the enthusiasts have proclaimed that the 21st century will belong to the fuel.

The International Energy Agency said demand for gas will rise by more than half by 2040, a pace of consumption growth far higher than oil’s. Electrification of transport and the gasification of electricity all point to a bright future for the fuel. Shell’s “New Lens Scenarios”, a collection of slightly woolly long-term predictions, talk of the “ascent of gas”. The company is certainly putting its money where its mouth is. Assuming Shell’s $70bn deal for BG Group goes ahead, the new amalgam will enjoy a commanding position across the world’s natural gas business, beaten only by Gazprom and National Iranian Oil Company in terms of production. In liquefied natural gas (LNG), it will be the worl

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