Fracking the Kaiser? Royal Navy experiments with shale oil in 1914.

Shale oil in 1914? There’s nowt new under the sun.

Mr. EDGAR JONES asked the First Lord of the Admiralty whether he has caused any experiments to be conducted for the extraction of oil fuel from coal or shale, or caused any inquiries to be made as to the comparative cost of oil extraction by any of the processes now being adopted by commercial concerns?

Mr. CHURCHILL The Admiralty have made some experimental extractions on a small scale of oil from certain shales in the United Kingdom, and the various commercial processes for extracting oil from coal and shale are being watched with the keenest interest. It is not practicable to give any comparative details, as much experimental work is still being done.

Source: United Kingdom. Hansard Parliamentary Debates, 5th ser., vol 58, cc920-1 (1914).

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