D-Day set for Fylde fracking bids

Gas exploration company Cuadrilla has unveiled plans to carry out fracking at two new Lancashire sites.'The firm has earmarked new exploration sites in Roseacre and Little Plumpton on the Fylde.
Gas exploration company Cuadrilla has unveiled plans to carry out fracking at two new Lancashire sites.'The firm has earmarked new exploration sites in Roseacre and Little Plumpton on the Fylde.
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D-Day has been set for the decision over whether fracking will be allowed to go ahead on the Fylde.

Lancashire County Council is to hold determination days on energy company Cuadrilla’s two bids to drill and test frack up to four wells at Preston New Road near Little Plumpton and Roseacre Wood.

Its Development Control Committee is set to make decisions on the planning applications for shale gas development at the sites – the major hurdle in the way of gas extraction from deep 
lying rocks below the Fylde.

The committee will also rule on associated separate applications for environmental monitoring, at the sites.

The Environment Agency has already said that it is minded to agree permits for Cuadrilla to carry out its exploration but will take further submissions before its final decision.

The planning applications relating to the Preston New Road site are scheduled to be decided at a meeting to begin at 10am on Wednesday, January 28.

The applications relating to the Roseacre Wood site are scheduled to be decided at a meeting to begin at 10am on Thursday, January 29.

The following day, January 30, has also been set aside for deliberations in case a decision has not been reached on previous days.

The council’s planners have been working since the applications were received in June to consult with the public and other statutory agencies, and assess the applications, to ensure all the information needed to determine them is put before the committee.

Reports to be considered will be published at www.lancashire.gov.uk on January 21.

Ebony Johnson, from Frack Free Lancashire, said the groups which opposed fracking in the area would be watching developments closely. She said: “I believe that several residents will be making presentations to the council and we will have people attended the hearings.

“We hope that the councillors act in the best interests of Lancashire residents.”

A spokesman from Cuadrilla said: “After a thorough and extensive consultation period we are looking forward to Lancashire County Council determining our planning applications at the end of January 2015 for our proposed exploration sites.”