Millionaire’s green gas bid to halt shale

A Green Gas Mill in Germany

A Green Gas Mill in Germany

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A green multi-millionaire entrepreneur has lodged a bid to stop Fylde fracking by replacing it with green gas mill plans.

Dale Vince, founder of Gloucestershire-based Ecotricity, has approached Fylde Council about planning permission for the plants at Little Plumpton off Preston New Road and at Roseacre Wood.

Dale Vince

Dale Vince

The dome shaped plants would use locally grown grass to produce gas for energy and fertiliser as a by-product.

Ecotricity recently won planning permission to build its first Green Gas Mill in Hampshire – one of six sites in development.

However the company said its latest applications at potential fracking sites in Lancashire are part of a wider strategic campaign to prevent shale gas exploitation, highlight the lack of democracy in the planning process ­and illustrate there is an alternative way to make gas.

Mr Vince, Ecotricity founder and owner of non-league football side Forest Green Rovers, said: “Local opposition to fracking is simply being ignored – it’s the most unpopular energy source ever, but it’s being forced on people by the government.

“We want to show that there‘s an alternative to fracking – and start a local debate in the areas directly affected by it, in the same way we want to start a debate at the national level, including the House of Commons.

“It’s important not just to oppose fracking, but to have an answer as to where Britain is going to get its gas from as North Sea supplies run out.

“Green gas is the new option – this is something that local communities should be able to choose instead of fracking, and something the government should now consider.

“It’s not too late to prevent fracking – it hasn’t really started yet.

“We’ve unveiled a new way of making gas – it’s a viable alternative to fracking, and the right thing to do in light of this new option is to have a proper review of where we’re going to get our gas in Britain.”

Francis Egan, CEO of Cuadrilla said: “It is widely accepted that the UK is going to need to rely on a range of energy sources, including renewable, nuclear and gas, to meet future demands to heat our homes and fuel British manufacturing.”

But he said the two sites had already been leased.