Diary

July 2016 drilling headlines

PapersEdit

DrillOrDrop’s digest of the past month’s news about fracking, shale and onshore oil and gas developments in the UK and around the world.

  • Committee on Climate Change says shale gas is inconsistent with UK climate targets unless it meets key tests
  • Medact report says climate change is the biggest threat to health from fracking
  • OGA confirms PEDL licence relinquishments, extensions and new terms
  • DECC abolished in May’s reshuffle
  • Judicial review sought of Third Energy planning permission
  • INEOS says it is planning 30 shale applications in next six months
  • Large anti-fracking rally in York
  • Decision on IGas application at Misson delayed until October but Surrey production plans approved
  • Egdon announces production plans at Wressle in Lincolnshire
  • UKOG unveils plans for Horse Hill in Surrey and Markwells Wood in West Sussex
  • Eight anti-fracking campaigners found guilty following protests outside Horse Hill oil site in Surrey
  • Report predicts cancellation of CCS could cost the UK £30bn
  • Recommendation from Cuadrilla fracking inquiry sent to government – announcement due by October 
  • Sell-out Fracked! Or don’t mention the F-word, a new play by Alistair Beaton, opens in Chichester

Read on for more details, more stories and links.

31 July 2016

Backing for fracking up slightly but strong support at record low – government survey. DrillOrDrop report

30 July 2016

Photo post of Don’t Frack Yorkshire rally and march in YorkDrillOrDrop  post. BBC NewsITV NewsThe York Press

29 July 2016

Local round-up of oil, gas and fracking policy. DrillOrDrop report on news from Barnsley, Leicestershire and Gloucestershire.

Study finds communities need to be proactive about frackingPhys Org reports on research on community responses to fracking in the US. The paper – Carolyn G. Loh et al. Local Land Use Planning Responses to Hydraulic Fracturing, Journal of the American Planning Association (2016 – finds that communities could use existing land use, noise and zoning restrictions to regulate fracking to some degree. Communities with more knowledge and experienced technical staff were more likely to have adopted some regulations to either prevent or address fracking issues.

28 July 2016

Pioneer says some US fracking costs competitive with SaudisMailOnline reports comments by Scott Sheffield, CEO of Pioneer Natural Resources that improved fracking techniques have cut production costs in the Permian Basin to $2 a barrel, low enough to compete with Saudi Arabia. The website says the remarks could be the “most concrete sign yet that the fittest U.S. shale oil producers will survive the price crash that started in mid-2014”.

Anti-fracking campaigners keep up their protestThe Wiltshire Times reports Keep Wiltshire Frack Free is keeping up momentum following a meeting with Wiltshire Council earlier this month.

27 July 2016

Officials urged to monitor Lancashire seismic testing for oil and gas firm Aurora after residents complain about vibrations. DrillOrDrop report

Fracking row escalates as environmental charity Friends of the Earth Scotland accuse Ineos of “desperation”. Herald Scotland news story based on letter from the director of Friends of the Earth Scotland, Richard Dixon (see 26 July 2016)).Commonspace report

Scottish fracked gas should be welcomed as a potential stepping stone to a low-carbon economy. Bob Downie, in a letter to Herald Scotland, responds to Richard Dixon, of Friends of the Earth. He describes methane as the “least worst culprit” for fossil fuels. Mr Downie adds: “our society will continue to use fossil fuels for many years to come. Given that, I would hugely prefer locally produced, relatively clean gas to dirtier fossil fuels produced from distant locations such as oil from the tar sands of Alberta.”

Clinton wants to end ‘Halliburton loophole’ on fracking, adviser saysThe Hill reports comments by an adviser to Hillary Clinton that she would push Congress to reverse a 2005 measure that exempts hydraulic fracturing from some federal environmental standards, including the Safe Drinking Water Act, known as the Halliburton loophole.

26 July 2016

Yorkshire prepares to march against fracking – organisers predict 2,000 at Saturday’s York rally. DrillOrDrop report

New group backs fracking in Lancashire. DrillOrDrop report. Also Lancashire Evening Post and Blackpool Gazette reports (27/7/2016)

Key site for mining sand for fracking identified. The Leighton Buzzard Observer reports that a large silica sand formation running from Leighton Buzzard to Cambridge is among five sites in the country that could help the UK fracking industry. The paper says the Woburn Sand Formation was identified in a recent report by the British Geological Survey as a key UK location for quarrying silica sand.

IGas announces it allotted 502,582 shares on 25 July to employees under the IGas Energy Share Incentive Plan. About 7,658 were allotted monthly to Stephen Bowler, John Blaymires and Julian Tedder.

INEOS must know it is losing fracking argumentHerald Scotland has a letter from Richard Dixon, director of Friends of the Earth Scotland. He says a new offensive by INEOS against the green lobby is a “clear sign of desperation”. He says the Scottish Parliament vote to ban fracking has “thrown it into a tizzy”. Dr Dixon adds: “Ineos knows that the Scottish Government’s forthcoming studies looking at health, climate change, earthquakes, house prices and traffic impacts are going to turn up the same kind of evidence that has led to fracking being banned in countries and regions across the world, with Germany the latest to ban shale gas fracking just last month.”

Potential fracking sites near Mickle Trafford come into focusThe Chester Chronicle reports about 70 people attended an event at which employees from the Environment Agency, Health and Safety Executive, Public Health England and the Oil and Gas Authority answered questions about fracking. The paper says anti-fracking campaigners are to carry out a survey of public opinion in Mickle Trafford. A similar survey for Frack Free Guilden Sutton found more than 76% of respondents thought fracking was a bad idea and 9% thought it was a good idea.

Predicted increase in fracking permits has little to do with Brexit, experts say, but watch out for weaker regulations. DeSmogUK responds to articles suggesting that Brexit could lead to a “fracking free for all”. It quotes David Powell, of the New Economics Foundation: This is a government that wants to frack. It is not any more popular than it ever was. It is extremely unlikely the government will back down on fracking. We will see more applications going in because the government wants to see more applications going in. That is just generally the case.”

Call for Fylde to join county’s strong business voice in region. The Blackpool Gazette reports comments by Francis Egan, chief executive of Cuadrilla, that Lancashire has the credentials to be able to be as influential as Greater Manchester and Merseyside. Cuadrilla is sponsoring the Construction Business of the Year award at the Be Inspired Business Awards, the BIBAs, for a second successive year.

25 July 2016

Horse Hill protest trial: 8 campaigner found guilty and 1 acquittedDrillOrDrop report on the verdict in a five-day trial.

What’s happening this week? DrillOrDrop diary of key events about fracking and onshore oil and gas

Chichester talks fracking. DrillOrDrop’s extracts from the shale gas debate hosted by Chichester Festival Theatre and featuring David Smythe, Julie Wassmer, Ernest Rutter and Nick Riley.

October confirmation for Cuadrilla Lancashire recommendation. The Communities minister, Gavin Barwell, confirms in written to a question from MP Caroline Lucas that the report of the Inspector at the Cuadrilla inquiry will be published when the decision is issued, on or behalf 6 October 2016.

Under May’s new government a UK gas fracking push is probable. Bloomberg reports on the prospects that the new Prime Minister’s government will promote fracking. The website says May voted in line with government policy against additional regulation and a moratorium. She has also included in her cabinet supporters of fracking, including Amber Rudd, Andrea Leadsom and Greg Clark.

Burning coal for gas in UK seabeds would flame pollution, says report. The Guardian reports on a study by Friends of the Earth Scotland which says plans to set fire to coal under the seabed at up to 19 sites around the UK would cause significant climate pollution, groundwater contamination and toxic waste. The Coal Authority has granted licences for underground coal gasification covering more than 1,500sq km of seabed of northern England, Wales and east central Scotland. The Scottish and Welsh governments have put temporary moratoriums on the technique. But Cluff Natural Resources has licences for nine potential undersea coalfields off northern England, amounting to 640 sq km valid until 2020.

Revealed: blow to controversial plans to burn coal under the sea. Herald Scotland reports plans to set fire to coal under the sea around Scotland look set to be dealt a blow by an independent review for the Scottish Government. The review’s author, Professor Campbell Gemmell, has indicated that he shares concerns about climate pollution and the safety standards associated with underground coal gasification (UCG) abroad.

Ryedale delegate calls on Labour to adopt fracking ban. The Northern Echo reports Mick Johnson, who lives near the first approved fracking site in the UK since 2011, is to call on the Labour Party to adopt a 10-year ban on shale gas extraction. He proposes to put forward the resolution from the Thirsk and Malton Labour group at the national party conference in Liverpool in September.

24 July 2016

Fuelling the fire: new report shows Underground Coal Gasification a reckless experiment. A report by Friends of the Earth Scotland if Cluff Natural Resources’ Kincardine UCG project went ahead, around 120 million tonnes of CO2 could be released into the atmosphere, more than twice Scotland’s annual carbon emissions. There are a total of 6 licenses in the Forth and Solway Firths. The report also concludes that globally, Underground Coal Gasification would fuel climate change by potentially creating an extra 1650 billion tonnes of CO2 which alone is four times the amount that can be emitted if the world is to avoid catastrophic climate change.

22 July 2016

Ineos declares war on “scaremongering” green lobby over fracking claims. Herald Scotland reports INEOS, one of Scotland’s largest private companies, is to launch a “sustained counter-offensive” against the country’s green lobby after accusing senior environmentalists of embarking on a campaign of scaremongering and hypocrisy against fracking.

UKOG acquires further interest in Horse Hill licences. UK Oil & Gas Investments PLC announces it has paid £1m to acquire the entire 3.9% interest of Flowermay Ltd in the onshore Weald Basin licences PEDL137 and 246. UKOG now holds 31.2% of the licences.

21 July 2016

UKOG plans for production at Horse Hill but local people say it’s the wrong site for an oil wellDrillOrDrop report

UKOG boss promises community share of oil revenues from Horse Hill. DrillOrDrop report

New drilling and testing plans announced for Gatwick GusherDrillOrDrop report

Exclusive: Trump considering fracking mogul Harold Hamm as energy secretary – sourcesReuters reports the Republican presidential candidate, Donald Trump, is considering nominating Oklahoma oil and gas mogul, Harold Hamm, is energy secretary if elected to the White House on 8 November, according to sources close to the campaign.

Report rules out fracking say protestersFleetwood Today reports that opponents of fracking say an updated medical report into the controversial process shows that it should not be allowed to go ahead on the Fylde. Residents and groups opposing plans to frack at two sites on the Fylde say the report by Medact links hydraulic fracturing to health problems with people living near gas sites.

20 July 2016

Government cancellation of carbon capture and storage project could cost £30bn. A briefing by the National Audit Office for the parliamentary Environment Audit Committee says the cancellation in November2016 by the chancellor of a £1bn CCS project could cost the UK an extra £30 billion to meet its 2050 carbon reduction targets.

A hard decision on shale gasThe Dundee Courier features the arguments for and against shale gas exploitation in the midland valley of Scotland.

Gloucestershire ‘to presume in favour’ of fracking despite calls to change policy. Gloucestershire Live reports the Conservative County Council does not plan to change the policy on fracking to a presumption against because that make it easier for the technique to be approved. A new draft minerals plan, which goes out to public consultation in September, says proposals for the “exploration and/or production of oil and gas including through the deployment of unconventional techniques will be permitted” as long as a list of eight conditions are met.

19 July 2016

Policing at Horse Hill oil site protest nr Gatwick was “negligent” and an “abject failure”, court told. DrillOrDrop report of final day of evidence in protest trial

Fracking liked to asthma flare-ups. BBC News reports on a study from Pennsylvania which found patients’ asthma was harder to control if they lived near a fracking site, compared with other patients. The findings, based on studies of more than 25,000 patients, are published in the journal, JAMA. The authors say more safety studies are needed. Link to journal

Upgrade to Portland Oil in Place at Horse Hill. UK Oil & Gas Investments PLC announces a new petrophysical analysis by Nutech. This, it says, demonstrates a threefold increase in calculated total oil in place per square at the Horse Hill well in the Upper Portland. The analysis upgrades the oil in place from 7.7 million barrels (MMbbl) to 22.9 MMbbl per square mile – a 200% increase.

Oil prices fall on oversupply concerns despite shale cutsMail Online reports that oil prices eased in early Asian trading as concerns over a crude and fuel oil glut outweighed an expected cut in US shale production and a likely further draw in US crude stocks.

Theresa May could create jobs, slash bills and boost our post-Brexit economy if she gets fracking. The Sun reports fracking would allow the Prime Minister to “create 500,000 new jobs, slash electricity bills, restore British manufacturing, boost our economy, make us richer and stop our energy supplies being held to ransom by Putin, the Arabs, the French and other foreign regimes”.

Residents fight back against test fracking in Dearne Valley. ITV News reports on meetings held in South Yorkshire against plans by INEOS to carry out fracking in the Dearne Valley.

Federal agents went undercover to spy on anti-fracking movement, emails revealThe Intercept reports police in Colorado collected details about a Keep it in the Ground protest from undercover officers as the event was being planned. Local law enforcement and federal agents later went undercover among the protesters. Emails also showed that police monitored participating groups and relied on intelligence from Anadarko, one of the largest oil and gas producers in the region.

UK’s 5th carbon budget approved by parliament. Transcript of House of Lords debate and Committee on Climate Change infographic

18 July 2016

“Dangerous and intimidating” driving prevented peaceful protest at Horse Hill oil site, court toldDrillOrDrop report of day 4 of protest trial.

What’s happening this week? DrillOrDrop update of key events about fracking and the onshore oil and gas industry.

Fracking Week in Politics. DrillOrDrop’s update on parliamentary discussion of fracking and shale gas.

UN criticises UK and Germany for betraying Paris climate deal. The Guardian reports that Ban Ki-moon’s climate change envoy, Mary Robinson, has accused the UK and Germany of backtracking on the spirit of the Paris climate deal by financing the fossil fuel industry through subsidies. Mrs Robinson, the former president of Ireland, said she had to speak out after Germany promised compensation for coal power and the UK provided tax breaks for oil and gas.

INEOS to invest millions in Hull plant. Insider Media reports INEOS has unveiled plans for a multimillion-pound expansion of its ethyl acetate plant at Hull by 100,000 tonnes per year. The Hull site will also benefit from INEOS’ $1bn decision to import US shale gas to Scotland. A pipeline linking INEOS’ petrochemicals plant at Grangemouth with INEOS Oxide in Hull means the site will be able to use ethylene produced from imported US shale gas, as its main raw material.

Metro Mayor contender says no to fracking. The Liverpool Echo reports that Steve Rotheram, during a visit to the Metro Gateway construction site, says he would like to impose a moratorium on fracking in the city region to avoid leaving a toxic legacy for ‘years or decades’.

Runcorn MP seeks reassurances from new secretary on frackingThe Liverpool Echo reports that Weaver Vale MP Graham Evans asked Andrea Leadsom about the effect of fracking on Frodsham and Helsby. Mrs Leadsom, now Environment Secretary, said she hoped she could reassure the MP’s constituency would be protected. For transcript see DrillOrDrop’s Fracking Week in Politics.

Sefton councillor hits out at “dishonest” fracking motion. The Southport Visitor reports criticism by Lib Dem Councillor, Simon Shaw, of a motion against fracking. Cllr Shaw said it was deeply misleading because it included the caveat “until such time as the council is satisfied as to the safety and regulation of (fracking)”.

17 July 2016

INEOS targets British test wells to kick-start shale gas marketThe FT reports INEOS plan to lodge up to 30 planning applications to drill test wells in the next six months. Tom Crotty, a director at Ineos, tells the paper he hopes drilling in the north of England will start early next year and extracting gas by drilling in about 18 months. Mr Crotty said that he was confident that recent changes to rules allowing ministers to intervene if local councils delay granting permission would finally lead to Ineos drilling test wells. Once drilling started, Mr Crotty said, people would “see [fracking] is not the Frankenstein monster they thought it was”. However he admitted that until permission was granted, it would continue to be “difficult” to convince critics.

Fracked! Please Don’t Use the F-Word. Reviews of Alistair Beaton’s environmental satire on fracking, playing at Chichester Festival Theatre. The GuardianThe FT and The Times

Are the fracking regulators up to the task? Frack Free Notts publishes its critique of the fracking industry’s methods and regulations.

16th July 2016

Solidarity walk from Middlesbrough. Frack Free Ryedale reports walkers came from Middlesbrough across the moors in solidarity with Frack Free Kirby Misperton and Frack Free Ryedale. The Yorkshire groups hosted an afternoon tea event for local people followed by an evening flower laying ceremony at the Kirby Misperton well site when the walkers arrived. Northern Echo report

15 July 2016

Decision on IGas Misson shale gas plans delayed until October by extended consultation on new information. DrillOrDrop report

UKOG’s Stephen Sanderson misses court appearance in Horse Hill fracking protest trial. DrillOrDrop report.

UK faces winter gas crunch following storage shutdownThe Telegraph reports the UK faces a winter gas supply crunch after Centrica said it had been forced to shut until next spring its Rough gas storage facility which accounts for more than 70% of UK total storage capacity.

14 July 2016

DECC abolished: Leadsom to Environment, Javid gets Local Government, Clark to Business and Energy. DrillOrDrop report on ministerial changes of new May administration and reaction to abolition of Department of Energy and Climate Change.

13 July 2016

“Significant environmental effects” likely from UKOG’s South Downs National Park oil production scheme, say planners. DrillOrDrop report

Surrey councillors approve IGas plans for 15 years of gas production in Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. DrillOrDrop report

12 July 2016

Anti-fracking tanker protest put police in danger, trial of Horse Hill oil site campaigners told. DrillOrDrop report

Ineos chief makes fresh case for fracking in ScotlandHerald Scotland reports comments by John McNally, the chief executive of INEOS’s Grangemouth petrochemicals site. He called for an overhaul of UK energy policy and for manufacturing to be placed at the centre of the economy. He also urged Scottish ministers to review the current moratorium on fracking in Scotland, declaring that industry would be transformed if companies such as INEOS were free to tap into indigenous shale resources. Energy Voice

MP’s fracking warning after changes to licence for central DoncasterDoncaster Free Press reports calls by Doncaster MP Rosie Winterton for safeguards over fracking after Alkane Energy’s exploration licence was modified to include details of a site around the former Markham Main Colliery. A source at the company tells the paper the firm does carry out fracking but extracts methane from former colliery sites.

Lancaster MP requests urgent fracking meeting with minister. The Lancaster Guardian reports Lancaster MP, Cat Smith, has requested an urgent meeting with Greg Clark, Communities and Local Government Secretary, to discuss fracking in Lancashire. She wants to ensure he hears the voice of local communities when he decides whether to allow fracking at Little Plumpton and Roseacre Wood.

11 July 2016

What’s happening this week? DrillOrDrop’s update on key events about fracking and onshore oil and gas including film screenings, walks, consultation deadline, talks, conference, court hearing and council meetings.

Andrea Leadsom pulls out of Tory leadership contest. The pro-Brexit, pro-shale gas energy minister, Andrea Leadsom, has withdrawn from the Conservative Party leadership election. She said she wasn’t convinced she had enough support among Conservative MPs to form a strong a stable government. She added that a nine-week leadership campaign at such a “critical time” for the UK would be “highly undesirable”. BBC NewsThe Telegraph and The Guardian, among many others

What does Angela Eagle believe? The Independent reports on the voting record of Angela Eagle, the challenger for the Labour leadership. It says she voted against stronger regulations on fracking in national parks and world heritage sites last year but has backed other measures to stop climate change, including the climate change bill and the setting of a decarbonisation target.

Fracking supporter tells of threats and bullying. The Times interviews Lorraine Allanson, a supporter of fracking in North Yorkshire. She says she has become a victim of what she describes as a campaign of bullying and intimidation that threatens her bed and breakfast and holiday cottage business.

Sefton Council to debate motion on frackingThe Southport Visitor reports the Labour leader of Sefton Council, Ian Maher, has proposed a motion confirming Sefton’s opposition to fracking. The motion will be discussed at the meeting on Thursday 14 July. Cllr Maher said the use of fracking (hydraulic fracturing for shale gas) as an energy source negatively adds to global climate change and could have a number of detrimental local effects.

Correction of article. Environmental Science and Technology published the corrected version of the article Emissions of Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbons from Natural Gas Extraction into AirAn earlier retraction notice said: “After publication the authors discovered a mistake in the air concentration calculations. PAH air concentrations reported in the original article are therefore incorrect. The calculation error resulted from using incorrect units of the ideal gas constant, and improper cell linkages in the spreadsheet used to adjust air concentrations for sampling temperature. Correcting this error changes air concentrations significantly relative to those reported in the published article. This correction also changes some of the conclusions reported in the original article.” DrillOrDrop did not report on the original paper.

10 July 2016

Fracking Week in Politics. DrillOrDrop‘s digest of political debate on fracking and onshore oil and gas for the week ending 8 July 2016.

Struggling shale explorer braces for looming takeover threat. The Telegraph reports that IGas is on alert for a possible hostile takeover after a mystery fund snapped up over a quarter of its bonds to put it within 6pc of a controlling interest. IGas’s covert buyer used the Nordic bonds arranger Pareto to secure 27.4pc of its $165m (£127m) corporate bonds at 75c on the dollar. The purchase falls just short of the 33.3pc blocking stake which would effectively hand control of the company’s debt to the holder. CityAm

Firm to start mini-fracking in North Lincolnshire to tap into £75m fortuneThe Scunthorpe Telegraph reports on Egdon’s plans to begin production from its Wressle site and the stepping up of a campaign to stop it. See also DrillOrDrop report on the details of the plans

8 July 2016

Bassetlaw councillors object to IGas shale gas plans for Tinker Lane, against planners’ advice. DrillOrDrop report

7 July 2016

Shale gas needs inconsistent with UK climate targets unless it meets key tests, government advised. DrillOrDrop report on Committee on Climate Change advice which also calls for stricter regulation but argues that if its tests are met shale gas could be a useful source of energy. See also BBC News (Cautious green light for fracking); Daily Telegraph (Fracking regulations ‘inadequate’, government advisers warn); The Guardian (Fracking ‘will break UK climate targets unless rules are made stricter’); Financial Times (Fracking threatens UK’s climate change targets, says report); Business Green (Climate Change Committee: Fracking only viable if strict carbon conditions met); The Ecologist (Fracking not compatible with UK climate targets, say CCC);  Caroline Lucas MP (Fracking will take Britain ‘further in the wrong direction‘) Written statement by Energy Minister, Andrea Leadsom

Biggest health from fracking is climate change, says updated Medact report. DrillOrDrop report

Legal challenge launched to North Yorkshire County Council decision to approve Third Energy application for fracking at Kirby MispertonDrillOrDrop report. Also BBC NewsThe Gazette and HeraldNorthern EchoENDS Report and The Guardian

6 July 2016

Red line anti-fracking protest outside Manchester onshore oil and gas conference. DrillOrDrop report and The Salford Star

What makes a good drilling site? Paul Foster, of Barton Willmore tells DrillOrDrop what oil and gas companies look for above ground.

It was a nimby thing – but as we learned about the risks of fracking it became something bigger. The Guardian features Balcombe anti-fracking campaigner, Kathryn McWhirter, in a feature The little guy V The Man: What happens when ordinary people take on extraordinary battles. Ms McWhirter tells Simon Usborne about the protests that succeeded in slowing down Cuadrilla’s operation in the village.

5 July 2016

Go-ahead recommended for gas production in Surrey protected landscape against planning policy. DrillOrDrop report

Cuadrilla fracking appeal recommendation sent to government for final decision. The Planning Inspectorate has said the decision by the Communities and Local Government Secretary will be announced on or before Thursday 6 October 2016. DrillOrDrop report and BBC News and Lancashire Evening Post

The farmer and the driller talk frackingDrillorDrop listens to the concerns of a farmer near Third Energy’s Kirby Misperton site and Third Energy’s reassurances about risk. Farming UK TV

Britain could import 93 pct of its gas by 2040 – National GridMail Online reports on scenarios by the National Grid which suggests Britain could rely on other countries for 93 percent of its gas supplies by 2040 if there is weak economic growth and not enough money available to support domestic gas production. This is one of four scenarios for future energy supply. Others put imports at 30-75%.

Leadsom vows to continue with UK’s climate commitments. The Guardian reports that Conservative leadership candidate, Andrea Leadsom, owed on Tuesday to continue with the UK’s commitments to tackle climate change and decarbonise the energy supply, despite the Brexit vote. She said that reducing greenhouse gases was a duty to future generations, and pledged to continue with the UK’s carbon budgets to set a limit on emissions. But she “made no apology” for the cuts in incentives for low-carbon power that the current government has made, and said the market would decide the UK’s future energy supply.

Oil ends down nearly 5 percent on Brexit worry, supply buildsReuters reports from New York that oil prices tumbled nearly 5 percent on Tuesday as investors worried that Britain’s exit from the European Union would slow the global economy, making it unlikely energy demand will grow enough to absorb a supply glut.

US shale firms’ Q1 hedging rush may squeeze margins, spur outputMail Online, quoting a Reuters analysis, reports as oil prices began recovering from 13-year lows early this year, U.S. shale producers ramped up their hedges against another slump on a scale unseen for at least a year. The review of disclosures by the largest 30 U.S. shale firms showed 17 of them increased their hedge books in the first quarter, the most at least since early 2015.

Big Oil Finding Money for biggest projectsThe Wall Street Journal reports what it describes as the deep freeze in oil-industry spending looks as if it is beginning to thaw. It says Chevron Corp., Exxon Mobil Corp. and several partners on Tuesday committed $37 billion to expand an oil project in Kazakhstan known as Tengiz, one of the biggest investments since crude prices collapsed two years ago.

4 July 2016

What politicians said about fracking, lobbying, regulation, climate change and the decision on Cuadrilla’s Lancashire plansDrillOrDrop’s update: Fracking Week in Politics.

June 2016 Drilling Headlines. DrillOrDrop’s digest of the last month’s news about fracking, onshore oil and gas and the campaigns around them.

What’s happening this week? DrillOrDrop’s weekly diary of key events about fracking, onshore oil and gas and the campaigns around them

Andrea Leadsom seeks to play down pro-EU commentsThe FT reports the pro-fracking Energy Minister, Andrea Leadsom, today launches her bid to stop Theresa May becoming Prime Minister and will play down comments she made in 2013 that leaving the EU would be “a disaster”.

Red line protest as fracking conference comes to Manchester. The Salford Star reports that campaigners from Frack Free Greater Manchester, Manchester Friends of the Earth, Reclaim the Power, Greenpeace and the Campaign against Climate Change will hold a “red lines” climate change protest outside the Planning and Environment Summit, sponsored by UK Onshore Oil and Gas on Wednesday 6 July.

Refusal to support fracking motion. Marcus Singleton, writing in The Pocklington Post, asks why Pocklington Ward councillor, Andy Strangeway, refused to support a motion to East Riding Council on fracking.

3 July 2016

UK climate sceptics prepare post-Brexit challenge. The Climate Home website reports Climate sceptics are taking advantage of the confusion caused by the EU referendum to attack the UK’s low carbon policy. The Global Warming Policy Forum, a think tank founded by Leave backer Lord Lawson, is hosting an event in the House of Lords on Monday evening. Legal professor David Campbell is set to argue the government should scrap the carbon budget for 2028-32 it approved last Thursday.

2 July 2016

Fracking protest in BartonThe West Lancashire Record reports more than 60 local anti-fracking campaigners gathered in Station Road, Barton and walked to the farmyard that Tesla is using as a base camp for seismic testing in the area.

Fracking firm stages talks for resort businessesThe Blackpool Gazette reports that shale gas exploration company Cuadrilla has launched a charm offensive in Blackpool. It is organising meetings and talks to outline its case for fracking in the Fylde to local businesses. Representatives met members of the Central Blackpool Business Forum to explain the process and benefits it might bring.

1 July 2016

New commitments, extensions + hand-backs for onshore oil & gas licences announced. DrillOrDrop report on what’s happening across the UK

Drilling diary – July  2016DrillOrDrop’s roundup of 40+ events about fracking, onshore oil and gas and community campaigns

Energy Minister launches leadership bid by saying only a Brexiteer can lead the partyEnergy Voice reports on Andrea Leadsom’s Conservative leadership bid.

Conservatives vote down ‘anorak’ proposal to protect Leicestershire environment from fracking. Mercury reports county councillors have rejected a call to strengthen planning powers to handle applications for fracking in Leicestershire. Labour’s Robert Sharp said a motion to alter the local minerals plan would ensure communities affected by fracking could have their say before a decision was taken. But Conservatives defeated the motion and said the county’s planning board already took views into account.t

Brexit uncertainty strengthens the case for UK shale. Jamie Ashcroft, writing for Proactive Investors, says “The pending exit from the European Union strengthens the argument for the development of Britain’s currently untapped shale gas resources. Britain’s energy security should be a concern whether it remains in the EU or not, though the vote to leave makes this an increasingly acute issue.”

Shepherd and Wedderburn acts in sale of oil and gas subsidiary. The law firm Shepherd and Wedderburn announces that it acted for Celtique Energie in the sale of its subsidiary, Celtique Energie Weald, and its 50% interest in PEDL234 to UK Oil & Gas Investments.

 

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