The Gas Technology Institute, Des Plaines, Ill., and the GFZ German Research Centre for Geosciences in Potsdam, Germany, have signed a memorandum of understanding to launch the Sustainable Operating Practices Initiative for European unconventional gas. The two organizations will develop and execute projects addressing the environmental impact of unconventional gas exploration and production activities in Europe.

“Considerable growth potential for unconventional gas development beyond North America has been identified, but for it to be developed successfully, it must be environmentally and economically sustainable,” says Guy Lewis, GTI's managing director of unconventional gas.

“Unconventional gas research must include identification and deployment of sustainable field-operating practices, safety standards and environmental assurance," says Brian Horsfield, research director of the Gas Shales in Europe Consortium and GFZ's research department director.