Odds seem to be stacked against the frackers in Germany.

Guardian: “Germany consumes 90bn cubic metres of natural gas a year, making it the world’s eighth biggest user. Only 12% of its consumption is home-produced – with 37% imported from Russia, a trade that has been increasingly perceived as a problem as the crisis in Ukraine has escalated. The EU energy commissioner, Günther Oettinger, claimed in March that fracking could free Germany from its dependency on Russian imports “for decades to come”.”
“Many factors would make Lower Saxony the obvious place to start exploratory fracking. Most of Germany’s shale reserves are located here, and 90% of the natural gas produced in the country is extracted by conventional means in the region. What’s more, only a small percentage of the shale lies in areas that cannot be touched for fear of contaminating ground water.
The Netherlands has already announced it will frack close to its border with Lower Saxony. If you can’t escape the risks, some locals say, why not make some money? Unlike wind power, profits would not go to the farmers who own the land, but to the regional authorities.
….Protests in Lünne and around 30 other sites across Germany put companies like ExxonMobil off further exploratory drills two years ago. And in spite of industry lobbying and political tension in the Ukraine, it looks like Germany’s beermakers and anti-fracking protesters may be able to claim victory in the long term too.
Since last summer, its brewers association has been lobbying the environment minister, Barbara Hendricks, to update the water protection law to include even smaller brewers’ wells and private mineral springs, further threatening the commercial viability of fracking in Germany. It appeared to work. A spokesman for the environment ministry said it intended to “considerably tighten” legislation around fracking.
Any fracking-enabling legislation would have to be approved by the Bundesrat, the upper house of the German parliament in which the ruling coalition parties do not hold a majority. The last government tried and failed to pass a similar “fracking law” last year. The draft bill for new legislation, originally scheduled before the summer recess, appears to have already been postponed to the autumn.
Many of the key shale regions are represented by Green party environment ministers who want Germany to follow France’s example and ban unconventional fracking across the country. “We want Germany to have the world’s strictest fracking safeguards,” Lower Saxony’s environment minister Stefan Wenzel says. “If ExxonMobil wants to have a future in Germany, they should invest in renewable energies.”