Gazprom looks to greener future

April 27, 2012 at 7:39 AM

MOSCOW, April 27 (UPI) -- Greening up the natural gas sector means a growing footprint in an emerging European market, said Russian natural gas company Gazprom.

The board of directors at Gazprom said they "took notice" of unconventional natural gas production projects in Russia.

The company said that, in 2011, it started the trial development for coal-bed methane that could eventually produce as much as 140 billion cubic feet of natural gas per year.

Gazprom and some of its European counterparts have signed draft agreements aimed creating a green business model for European countries, the company said.

"The project is expected to enable Gazprom's entry into a new growing market of green natural gas in the European Union and to optimize the technology of gas production from renewable sources," a statement read.

The company announced that it increased its share in the European market from 24 percent in 2010 to 27 percent last year.

Gazprom said that, by 2030, European natural gas imports are expected to top 1.4 trillion cubic feet per year.

Europe aims to break Russia's grip on the regional energy sector by tapping into natural gas supplies from Central Asian and Middle Eastern producers.

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