South Korea finds gas hydrates in East Sea

Jun 25, 2007 02:00 AM

South Korea has found gas hydrates in the East Sea for the first time, and aims to begin production by 2015 to meet the country's growing energy needs, the country's energy ministry said.
The findings are encouraging for South Korea, which aims to cut its dependency on foreign fuel sources to single digits after 2010. The hydrates found in the East Sea consist of 99 % methane, the ministry said.

Gas hydrates are solid ice-like crystals formed from a mixture of methane and water and exist under specific temperature and pressure conditions. Formations are found under hundreds of metres of water, and closer to the surface in permafrost areas of the Arctic.
South Korea it will invest won 43.4 bn ($ 46.78 mm) this year for overall research and development of the area and plans to start drilling in September of this year.

Countries that have found gas hydrate reserves include the US, Japan, India and China.

Source: Asia Pulse Pte Ltd.
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