Recommendations Published on Shale Gas Planning Applications

Monday, June 15, 2015

Lancashire County Council has published its recommendations on the applications by oil and gas company Cuadrilla to explore for shale gas at Preston New Road and Roseacre Wood, by drilling, hydraulically fracking and testing the flow of gas, and for monitoring their operations.

The recommendations will be considered next week by the county council's Development Control Committee.

The reports with full details of the recommendations can be viewed on the Lancashire County Council website here

Click on the date of the meeting to view the agenda. The reports contain officers' recommendations to the committee.


Notes to editors:

Oil and gas companies Cuadrilla Bowland and Cuadrilla Elswick have applied for planning permission to develop two new sites to explore for shale gas by drilling, hydraulically fracturing (fracking), and testing the flow of gas. Separate applications have also been received for a series of boreholes to monitor for seismic movement and water quality (there are therefore two applications per site). The county council has received applications for:

• Preston New Road – Little Plumpton, Fylde West. Located north of Preston New Road (the A583), to the west of Little Plumpton (Cuadrilla Bowland Ltd - Application numbers LCC/2014/0096 and 0097):
• Roseacre Wood - Roseacre, Fylde East. Located to the south of the village of Roseacre (Cuadrilla Elswick Ltd – Application numbers LCC/2014/0101 and 0102).

Cuadrilla's applications for Preston New Road and Roaseacre Wood include:

An application for drilling, fracking and extended flow testing of the gas with a direct connection to a local gas transmission pipeline, if extended testing is thought to be viable and is carried out at each of the sites. It is proposed that the sites will have up to 4 vertical bore holes each with lateral boreholes extending from them, within a defined quadrant as projected to the surface.

The application for Preston New Road has been recommended for approval, subject to a number of conditions controlling time limits, working programme, restriction on permitted development rights, highway matters, soil management, hours of working, safeguarding of water courses, control of noise, dust, lighting, security, ecology, archaeology, landscaping, restoration and aftercare.

The application for Roseacre Wood has been recommended for refusal for the following reason: The proposed development would be contrary to Policy DM2 of the Joint Lancashire Minerals and Waste Local Plan – Site Allocation and Development Management Policies in that it would generate an increase in traffic, particularly HGV movements, that would result in an unacceptable impact on the rural highway network and on existing road users, particularly vulnerable road users and a reduction in overall highway safety that would be severe.

Associated applications have also been submitted for monitoring arrays. The monitoring arrays are designed to monitor seismic movement and water quality. These applications have been recommended for approval subject to conditions controlling time limits, working programme, site operations, times and hours of working, highway matters, protection of public rights of way, drainage, noise, protection of trees, ecological and archaeological protection, restoration and aftercare.

The applications are accompanied by Environmental Statements which have been produced as a result of Environmental Impact Assessments. The EIAs relate to both the site development and the monitoring array for each site even though they are separate applications.

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