Areas in the south of Herefordshire are now licensed for fracking.
On 17 December, government announced that 159 Petroleum Exploration and Development Licences (PEDLs) had been awarded for fracking across England under the 14th landward licensing round.
Areas to the south of our county, including inside the Forest of Dean and in the vicinity of Symonds Yat (known as SO 50, 51 60 and 61) are now licensed for the extraction of Coal Bed Methane by South Western Energy Ltd.
Before the licensee can start operations it must apply for planning and other permissions .
The Green Party believes that fracking for shale gas or to extract coal bed methane is totally incompatible with efforts (and UK commitments) to minimise climate change. The fuel extracted by fracking is a fossil fuel, and when burnt adds carbon to the atmosphere, contributing to global warming.
The drilling processes are disruptive, dirty and noisy and pose a threat to human health and to the natural environment including water quality.
Despite the government’s assertion that shale gas is a key part of our energy future, many industry commentators believe that it is not commercially viable in the UK.
Hereford Green Party will vigorously oppose any applications the licensee makes for the required permissions.
Rob Palgrave, chair of the party said,” How shameful for Britain – days after signing the global agreement on climate change in Paris, our government announces the go ahead for more exploration and extraction of fossil fuels. I hope our local politicians will be as resolute as their counterparts in Lancashire in resisting the development of fracking here.”
1. The award of a Petroleum Exploration and Development Licence (PEDLs) does not automatically give permission for operations to begin. The necessary planning and regulatory consents will be required before development can take place. All proposals will subsequently be scrutinised by the Environment Agency, and by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE). Consent from the OGA is also required before exploration or production drilling or production activities can commence.
2. Map of fracking blocks
3. List of operators awarded licences under the 14th round