INEOS confirmed today it would submit a planning application in early May for a vertical shale gas well on the edge of the village of Marsh Lane in north Derbyshire.
This morning, the company posted an official notice at the site at Bramleymoor Lane about its plans.
- A new access track
- Mobilisation of drilling, ancillary equipment and contractor welfare facilities
- Mobilisation of a workover rig
- Drilling a vertical hydrocarbon exploratory core well
- Listening well operations
- Retention of site and wellhead assembly gear for five years
The proposal, if approved, would probably be Derbyshire’s first shale gas well. INEOS has previously said the application would not include a request to frack.
A spokesperson for INEOS Upstream said today the application would be submitted to Derbyshire County Council in early May, “probably soon after the local council elections” [Thursday 4 May 2017] and certainly in the first half of May”.
The notice is required under Article 13 of the Town and Country Planning (Development Management Procedure) Order 2015. This obliges people proposing to apply for planning permission for mineral working to inform formally the owners or tenants of land to which the application relates.
Under the order, the notice must be displayed for not less than seven days in the period of 21 days immediately before the application is made to the local planning authority.
Any representations must be made by 8 May 2017. This period does not replace any public consultation period when the application has been submitted and published.
When submitted, the application must be validated by planners at Derbyshire County Council. This means the company has completed the application form, supplied the required information and paid the correct fee.
The application will then be posted on the council’s planning website and open for public comments. The consultation period usually lasts at least three weeks but can be six weeks or more. DrillOrDrop will report on the contents on the application when it becomes public.
In February, Derbyshire County Council confirmed that the application would not need an environmental impact assessment. It concluded that the potential impacts of the well on ecology, air quality, water quality, traffic and landscape would not be likely to have “significant effects on the environment”.
INEOS has held two public exhibitions in Marsh Lane this year about its plans. The company’s commercial director, Lynn Calder, described the proposal during an interview on Peak FM as “a very, very simple vertical cored well”. She added:
“There’s nothing that’s out of the ordinary compared to many of the wells that have been drilled onshore and offshore in the UK for decades. And so we would like to say that we don’t think there’s anything to worry about with this well at all.”
Opponents of the scheme, details of which emerged in early January, have been quick to mobilise in the area.
Lisa Shires, who lives 300 metres from the proposed site, said the reaction to the application from Marsh Lane had been “brilliant”.
“Everyone has come together and we’re going to fight it. And it’s not going to happen. We’re not going to let it”.
The Eckington Against Fracking group is holding a live music fundraiser at Marsh Lane Community Hall, Main Road, Marsh Lane S21 5RH on Friday 28 April 2017 from 7pm-10pm. Details
There is also a public meeting at Eckington Miners’ Welfare, Pipeyard Lane Eckington S21 4FA on Thursday 4 May at 7.30pm
Derbyshire County Council page on fracking and decision on Bramleymoor Lane EIA
DrillOrDrop key facts, links and timeline for Bramleymoor Lane
So how are INEOS going to extract gas from shale without fracking? Or are they going to exploit the redefinition of fracking framed in the Infrastructure Act?
Following various persons / bodies objections to Secretary of State for Communities (re Derbyshire County Council Planning decision no EIA required) response received 12th April from S of S office that a request made to Sajid Javid for a screening direction and that said screening direction was currently being prepared (and that objection comments would be taken into account) and advise of outcome would be given in due course.
No further update (not to myself re my objection) provided or outcome reported in media so assume still ongoing so how can Ineos submit a planning application on the 8th May until S of S has informed of outcome which however unlikely could possibly instruct that an EIA is required?
Rob Murfin (Head of Planning for DDC) is attending a meeting of Dronfield Town Council on Tuesday 2nd May 7.30 at Dronfield Civic Centre (open to public) to give a background on why a no EIA decision was reached when Ineos screening report originally submitted.