COUNTY hall bosses have stressed they will continue to view fracking in a “fair and neutral” way, despite calls for them to back a moratorium.
Lancashire County Council was asked to call for a halt to the process, which involves shooting high pressure water and chemicals underground to release gas from shale rock, on safety grounds at its last full council meeting.
But councillors rejected the call – and County Hall has moved to clarify its position on the controversial drilling.
Although it gives planning permission to drilling sites, the decision on whether to allow drill firm Cuadrilla Resources to resume fracking – currently suspended because of earthquakes in Poulton – lies with the Government, through the Department for Energy and Climate Chance (DECC).
County Coun Michael Green, cabinet member for environment and planning, said: “If the Government takes the decision to allow operations to continue, we will work with the relevant agencies to ensure it is carried out safely.”
It comes after protesters from anti-drilling campaign group Frack Off invaded a fairway during The Open at Royal Lytham and St Annes on Sunday (pictured).
Play was not interrupted and the campaigners left peacefully after unfurling a banner.