Scenarios for shale gas development and their related land use impacts in the Baltic Basin, Northern Poland

Claudia Baranzelli, Ine Vandecasteele, Ricardo Barranco, Ines Rivero, Nathan Pelletier, Okke Batelaan, Carlo Lavalle

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    28 Citations (Scopus)


    Scenarios for potential shale gas development were modelled for the Baltic Basin in Northern Poland for the period 2015-2030 using the land allocation model EUCS100. The main aims were to assess the associated land use requirements, conflicts with existing land use, and the influence of legislation on the environmental impact. The factors involved in estimating the suitability for placement of shale gas well pads were analysed, as well as the potential land and water requirements to define 2 technology-based scenarios, representing the highest and lowest potential environmental impact. 2 different legislative frameworks (current and restrictive) were also assessed, to give 4 combined scenarios altogether. Land consumption and allocation patterns of well pads varied substantially according to the modelled scenario. Potential landscape fragmentation and conflicts with other land users depended mainly on development rate, well pad density, existing land-use patterns, and geology. Highly complex landscapes presented numerous barriers to drilling activities, restricting the potential development patterns. The land used for shale gas development could represent a significant percentage of overall land take within the shale play. The adoption of appropriate legislation, especially the protection of natural areas and water resources, is therefore essential to minimise the related environmental impact.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)80-95
    Number of pages16
    JournalEnergy Policy
    Publication statusPublished - 1 Sept 2015


    • Environmental impact
    • Land use modelling
    • Shale gas


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