Breaking: IGas pulls out of Chester

Bailiffs arrive

Scene from the Upton eviction last month

In the past few minutes, IGas has confirmed it will not be drilling for coal bed methane at Upton near Chester, where a protest camp was evicted last month.The company said the site at Dutton’s Lane and another at Salters Lane, Mickle Trafford, did not meet its criteria for commerical coal bed methane development.

The eviction operation at Duttons Lane involved about 175 officers from four police forces supporting High Court Enforcement Officers. Cheshire Police said it cost an estimated £200,000. Nine people were arrested.

This afternoon, a statement from IGas said the company would not be drilling at either Duttons Lane nor its site at Salters Lane. Link to Igas statement 5 February 2016

An IGas spokesperson told DrillOrDrop the company would not be commenting on the eviction or the possession order sought in the High Court last year.

The statement read:

Between September and November 2015 IGas undertook a significant 3D seismic acquisition programme in the North West covering an area of 110km², this included the area around its sites at Duttons Lane and at Salters Lane in Cheshire.  That data is in the processing and interpretation phase, the full results of which will determine the Company’s future exploration and appraisal work programme in the area.

Having considered some early results from this recently acquired 3D seismic survey and following a review of its coal bed methane (CBM) exploration work programme in the area, IGas has concluded that the sites at Duttons Lane and Salters Lane do not meet its criteria for commercial CBM development.   IGas has therefore decided not to progress with these CBM exploration wells under the current planning permissions.

The land at Duttons Lane will now be returned to its former state including rectifying the damage caused to the area by the protest camp and the protestors.

This is the second time that IGas has pulled out of sites for commercial reasons. DrillOrDrop reported last month that the company had withdrawn from a planning appeal over its site at Dudleston Heath in north Shropshire because coal bed methane exploitation was not commercial viable.

Chester MP calls for IGas to contribute to eviction costs

DrillOrDrop has a daily digest of news, updated as it happens.Link here

11 replies »

  1. excellent news…but why didn’t they know if would be a waste of time beforehand? don”t they do enough research?

    • No, that’s why it’s called exploration, which can be defined as looking for the unknown and unfamiliar. All that happened here is that some exploration uncovers that there isn’t anything to find. There’s plenty of research, but as we say in the oil and gas business, the biggest lie detector is the drill bit. This was a dry hole. That’s all. Certainly not a victory for people’s democracy by any stretch whatsoever.

      • If that is, how can your industry say everything is safe if you don’t know what is going to happen when the drill goes into the ground? All your assurances are worth nothing when you have damaged or contaminated the water. Upton did a great job to save the greater crested newts on site and protect the children in the nearby schools from disruptive noise,traffic and pollution. Your industry has alot to learn about public relations.

    • 375,000 people employed in Offshore North Sea Gas and Oil Industry. Huge reserves. Demand dropping.Long standing contracts with Norway and secure infrastructure.Established LNG ports. Dong Energy increasing Offshore UK wind farms and driving prices down by 2020,making wind energy the same price as fossil fuel. Not really a need for the dearest, dirtiest gas that cannot meet our base fuel needs.You won’t be needing your axe and comb just yet.

Add a comment

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s