“Talking to communities is first priority”
Awarded eight licences cover 18 blocks, including a large area in the Cleveland Basin. Francis Egan, its chief executive, said in a statement:
“The award of these licences gives Cuadrilla a leading position in each of the three most prospective shale gas exploration areas in Northern England, namely Lancashire Bowland, Gainsborough in South Yorkshire and Cleveland in East Yorkshire. The massive potential for the natural gas to be extracted in these areas could help to drive the Northern Powerhouse by securing the low carbon energy future of the UK as well as creating investment and local jobs across the region.”
“Cuadrilla’s first priority is always to talk with local communities transparently about any proposed work and future operations. This has already begun in the licence areas awarded in August and will now be extended to the new areas. A community helpline has already been set up for communities in Yorkshire who may have early questions about onshore oil and gas exploration.
“For the next year activity in these new exploration licence areas will largely centre on desktop studies. This will give the company a very detailed understanding on the geology deep underneath the licence areas, helping to assess where exploration sites can subsequently be located.
“Push ahead with consenting process”
Egdon Resources was awarded four licences covering six blocks. It is also a partner in other licence areas. Its managing director, Mark Abbott, said:
“We are delighted with this outcome in what has been a very competitive Licensing Round. The blocks we have been offered in the 14th Round overall will provide further significant opportunities to grow our business and will be excellent additions to Egdon’s portfolio of UK exploration and development assets. The award of NZ90A and SE99A in the Cleveland Basin means we can now also push ahead with the consenting process for the proposed well to test the considerable potential of the offshore “A” Prospect.2
“As an established operator with a strong licence holding, we are encouraged by the high level of interest shown in the UK Onshore and are pleased that our good reputation and partnering strategy in the 14th Round helped us to secure these new licences. We look forward to progressing our evaluations of the new acreage whilst continuing to engage with local stakeholders, and will update shareholders in due course.”
“Critical time for Britain’s energy”
Awarded 11 licences across 17 blocks in Yorkshire, Lincolnshire, Sussex and Hampshire. In a company statement, chief executive Stephen Bowler said:
“We are delighted to have been formally offered these new blocks by the OGA, which significantly increases our acreage by approximately 25% across the key UK shale basins.
“We are also pleased to be strengthening the relationships with our existing partners Total, Egdon and GDF in these strategic areas.
“We already operate over 100 sites across the country and will continue to ensure that, in all existing and new areas, we engage with the local communities.
“This is a critical time for the future of Britain’s energy mix as gas, of which 50% of our consumption is currently imported, is central to our energy security as we transition to a lower carbon environment.”
“Start of shale gas revolution”
The company is the big winner in today’s announcement. It was granted 21 licences covering 37 blocks in Yorkshire, the east Midlands and Cheshire. In as statement, its chairman, Jim Ratcliffe, said:
“We are delighted with today’s announcement. The UK government has demonstrated it is determined to move forward with this exciting new industry. This is the start of a Shale gas revolution that will transform manufacturing in the UK. INEOS has the skills to safely extract the gas and we have already committed to both fully consult and to share the rewards with the local communities. ”
“We believe Shale gas could revolutionise UK manufacturing and we have the resources to make it happen, the skills to extract the gas safely and the vision to realise that communities must share in the rewards for it to be successfully developed.”
Gary Hayward, the chief executive of INEOS Shale, said:
“My team has worked incredibly hard to showcase INEOS’ skills and to be awarded so many licences supports our belief that we are the right company to extract shale gas in the UK. The government sees us as a safe pair of hands”
“Vital day for UK energy”
UK Onshore Oil and Gas
UKOOG represents the onshore oil and gas industry. Ken Cronin, its chief executive, said:
“This is a vital day for the future of energy in the UK.
“Today is about delivering a balanced energy mix in our country as we move to a lower carbon economy. We need to ensure that the 84% of our homes that use gas for heating can continue to do so and that the 30% of electricity produced by gas can be met using UK sources. We need to help meet the goals of the Government to eliminate coal from the system and ensure that we can also use gas and oil from our own country to produce products that are so vital to our everyday lives, like clothing, medicines, cosmetics and computers.
“We should also remember that the chemicals industry produce vital materials for our solar and wind industries, all from natural gas and oil. As has been demonstrated in other countries, renewables and gas have a vital role to play alongside each other.
“The COP 21 Summit in Paris has set some very welcome but demanding challenges on climate change. Meeting these targets will require a balance of a number of different technologies, in particular home-grown affordable and reliable sources of gas and oil in order to transition to a progressively lower carbon economy.
“Our industry has been under the most intense regulatory, public and parliamentary scrutiny over the last few years. It is clear that we have an extremely robust regulatory system and an industry willing to work within that. It is also vital that we ensure that the local communities we work in, know what we are doing and why we are doing it and benefit from it too.”
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