Third Energy releases equipment from fracking site because of “delays over final consent”


Crane arrives at KM8 to start loading equipment. Photo: Steven Spy

Third Energy confirmed tonight it was releasing some equipment from its fracking site at Kirby Misperton in North Yorkshire after the government required a review of the company’s finances.

The company said the review process could take “some time” and it expected “a further period” before final consent from the Government. Equipment was being redeployed to other projects, it said.

Anti-fracking campaigners photographed large vehicles transporting equipment off the site today.


Convoy on the approach to Kirby Misperton village Photo: Steven Spy

The Business Secretary, Greg Clark, announced last month that before making a decision on fracking consent at the KM8 well, he had instructed the Oil and Gas Authority to review Third Energy’s financial resilience. This would include the eventual decommissioning of the site.

In a statement this evening, the company said there would be:

“a further period before we can expect final consent from the Government to proceed with our operations.”

Third Energy media update Feb 2018 (pdf)


Drilling site equipment on the road to Kirby Misperton Photo: Steven Spy

The statement continued:

“As this process may take some time we have agreed with the relevant contractors to release some of their equipment from site; namely the coil tubing unit, the well control unit and the workover rig.

“This will allow our contractors to deploy their equipment to other projects during the financial review.

“We will maintain the majority of the operational equipment onsite and continue all of the monitoring requirements set by the regulators.

“We have informed North Yorkshire County Council and the Police about the planned movements and will be working with them to ensure they are undertaken safely and without disruption to residents.”


Convoy enters Kirby Misperton village. Photo: Steven Spy

Third Energy had told residents in November it was ready to begin fracking. In the statement it said:

“We appreciate that this situation creates further uncertainty for residents and we thank them for their patience.

“Given that there will be no hydraulic fracturing operations at the site until final consent is received, we hope that the protestors will also give residents a break from their campaign of disruption and this will enable everyone to resume their normal daily lives and also reduce pressure on North Yorkshire Police.”

Third Energy repeated its previous statement that it was pleased that it had satisfied 13 technical conditions required under the Infrastructure Act before fracking could go ahead at the KM8 well.

The company also said it was continuing to invest and develop its existing conventional fields.

“We are pleased to report that initial tests from our project to enhance gas flows are showing encouraging results.”

Third Energy also said it had begun the process of extending a range of permissions at well sites in the Vale of Pickering and at the Knapton Generating Station.

Today’s lorries came out of the site in a single convoy and opponents of the fracking operation carried out a “slow walking” protest.


Convoy is slow-walked from KM8 site. Photo: Steven Spy



Alan Linn, Third Energy’s chief operating officer

“We would like this time to ensure that everything is done, dusted, signed, sealed, delivered, then we bring the equipment back and we run it efficiently. And that’s good for us in terms of managing our project. It’s also good for the community in terms of minimising the amount of time and disruption the work that we’re undertaking could lead to.

“If we take it offsite now and we rest it for a while, whilst it goes and does other work, and we make sure we’ve done a thorough process with the government, then we can plan it all coming back on. Because we’ll have all of our permissions in place and we’re ready to go, when it comes back on we can get straight on to the project, we can complete it quickly and we can get everything off.”
Source: interview with BBC News 7/1/2018

Department of Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy

“There is no change from our perspective.”
Source: statement 

Karen Garrett, vice chair of Great and Little Barugh Parish Council and a member of the community liaison committee

“Once again, Third Energy are being reactive rather than proactive as questions had been raised over what was happening with equipment. A statement prior to this might have been more appropriate to inform local residents and allay speculation. Some monitoring equipment had already been removed from the surrounding area leading to concerns from residents. With the ongoing sensitivities they need to have higher regard for the communities.

The investigation into Third Energy’s financial affairs is welcomed as it has been a key area of concern for a very long time.
Source: statement

Kirby Misperton Protection Camp

“Campaigners have vowed to peacefully protest at KM8 until Third Energy go bust, and this announcement suggests we haven’t got too long to wait. The fact that contractors are recalling their equipment while the government investigates Third Energy’s finances doesn’t bode well for the health of the company. We would suggest it’s time for Third Energy to pack up and leave completely. The last two weeks have seen four rejections of fracking applications in the north of England. The tide has turned against the industry, fracking is a dead duck.”
Source: statement

Superintendent Alisdair Dey, North Yorkshire Police

“Throughout this operation we have been balancing the needs and wishes of everyone at Kirby Misperton. We will continue to work with people on all sides of the issue, minimising disruption to the local community and ensuring protest activity is peaceful and safe.”
Source: statement

Friends of the Earth fracking campaigner Rose Dickinson

“This welcome news is a further blow to the fracking industry, and a major boost for everyone working to prevent fracking in Ryedale.

“Third Energy is now facing an in-depth government investigation into its financial health.

“Whilst fracking has failed to deliver for the last six and a half years, renewable energy has gone from providing a tenth of our electricity to supplying a third of it.

“The government should finally pull the plug on fracking: It makes no sense for our environment, our climate or our energy needs.”
Source: statement

Steve Mason, Frack Free United

“Yet again, we need answers. I question whether Third Energy have even prepared for the resilience test and have been found wanting, particularly in the case of the decommissioning work. It makes you wonder whether they consider it a priority at all.

“The reports of ‘enhanced gas flow’ is clear signal of intent that they want to frack across North Yorkshire. Every day the fracking rig is not in operation is a day to be celebrated. This saga drags on and on, let’s hope it is a happy ending for Ryedale and it does not end up a tragedy.”
Source: statement

Ian Conlon, Malton resident

“This is humiliating for Third Energy and a credit to the many thousands of local residents in Ryedale who have opposed fracking both through the planning process and in protests on the ground, devoting time and energy to protect their community from the devastation that large scale fracking would have.

“As a community we have closely monitored and delayed the role out of fracking, and it appears now to have been stopped dead in its tracks, at least in Ryedale. With INEOS also having failed to gain communities and councils support across a swathe of Northern England, we are determined to continue our campaign until all the fracking companies pack up their equipment and leave.”
Source: statement


26 replies »

    • I think what is fascinating, is that Third Energy weren’t pushed, they fell of their own accounts?
      No one walked slowly in front of their accountants?
      No one locked on to their financial purse strings? We all doubted their financial validity, but in the end, it was not anyone else who brought them to their fiscal knees?
      It was their own accountants incompetence? Even the total absence of any operational accountability and the total absence of putative penalties for failing could not prop them up”
      They did it to themselves in the end, and one could say, that they were doomed to failure from the start?
      I have no doubt it will not end here though? I am sure there are plenty of predatory exploiters out there willing to propagate further scams and frauds on the British public?
      I am sure we can all think of a few, we all know and……love?

      [Typo edited at poster’s request]

  1. What’s to get excited about Joe? Perhaps there is an increasing demand for the equipment to be in use at other projects, as per the text?

    • “Perhaps there is an increasing demand for the equipment…”

      Lol! As another Conservative Council rejects planning!

      ♪♫ ‘Cause ain’t nothin’ goin’ on but the rent ♬♩

    • I thought this was an industry that made pots of money. A mighty cash cow. Cheap gas. etc. etc.

      Obviously not

      If there was even a whiff of a chance KM8 was going to make money a phone call or two would have sorted out the finances and Greg Clark would have given the green light overnight.

      I wonder if any of that kit is heading towards Cuadrilla’s Becconsall site to plug abandon and restore a failed site that has cost investors millions?

  2. Let’s not beat about the bush, today’s events are a combination of two factors. One; TE’ inability to submit accounts on time which although not illegal or as big a deal as the antis like to make out was not ideal considering being under NIMBY scrutiny. Two; Greg Clark being a real wuss and ditherer.
    I don’t really care about TE or Cuadrilla as they are minnows in comparison to Ineos. The latter has the support from the courts as well as lobbying power, the antis have zero lobbying power so I’m not bothered one little bit. Localism is nothing new and in fact I have seen far larger campaigns in the past to halt developments such as the Silverburn shopping complex. The antis never win as if they did then the country would be doomed in terms of investment of which we are reliant on. Hobbit and Co. fail to forget their overpriced homes are a product of capitalism.
    Anyway I’m going to stick my feet up and wait till some juicier news comes out as it’s been rather lacklustre past few weeks.

    • Actually Peeny I think my house is rather undervalued, but then, given that it is in a fracking PEDL, I suppose I shouldn’t be too surprised.

      I do realise it’s a product of capitalism though old thing – having run two successful business in tandem for much of the last 25 years I know a thing or two about capitalism, risk and reward which is why I find your constant bleating about greeny, lefty anarchists so very, very hilarious.

      You really do need to take a step back and try to get rid of the more obvious of your alt-right prejudices as they really do turn people off over here in the UK and they really detract from whatever gossamer thin arguments you appear to be able to present.

      Pip! Pip!

      (Those are the pips in the sour grapes we can see you wincing at btw)

  3. You wouldn’t want to let any of these hapless morons run a booze up in a brewery

    The folk who support them are even more moronic but hey, every ponzi scheme needs a ready supply of idiots

  4. Oh, how bitter Francis. Sure, we’ve all rushed out to load up on Barclays Bank shares just to get a tiny piece of Third Energy!

    Not only lacklustre, but lacklogic. Hope the new recruits can do better. Certainly can see the need for them.

    • Nobody’s rushing out to get any shares connected to fracking in the UK because it’s an idiotic idea, unless you’re shorting them, then it’s a genius idea.

      The market says fracking in the UK is a moronic idea and you know what they say about the market. Unless you know better of course lad lol

  5. Interestingly honest and accurate quote from TE “We will maintain the majority of the operational equipment onsite and continue all of the monitoring requirements set by the regulators”. Not sure how they’ll continue ALL monitoring when at least some of the monitoring equipment has been removed.

  6. Oh I do love watching Third Energy and the industry try to spin this one. A dike or dam starts to fail with a trickle, and there is an almighty flood. Hold on guys. Lets watch these companies go bust BEFORE they can cause large scale damage. EVERY community needs to stand up and oppose this industry, in planning, through their elected representatives at all levels right up to Westminster, and if necessary on the streets. We are the ones that live here and will be here long after the frackers have moved on to their next boom and bust ventures. I gather a certain Carillion boss is a director of Third Energy. Enough said. Bye bye frackers!!! And don’t come back, we will watch and be present and slow you down at this and other sites until we know you have gone for good.

    • Every community will oppose fracking wherever they try it in the UK. The only question is the extent of that opposition.

      Some places will be a handful of folk. Some places will be like a modern day Orgreave with the site routinely grinding to a standstill with a job that should take weeks stretching out to months even years.

      The fracking industry have also been particularly clueless at picking the soft targets which runs parallel with the idiotic assumptions made by its supporters and the UK press about who is the average anti fracker.

      One of the most basic requirements in any battle is to fully understand your enemy, something that these imbeciles never seem to be able to master. Thankfully.

    • Yes. He was squirming in front of a House of Commons committee today, unable to explain why he and his fellow directors were stuffing their pockets with cash that should have gone into the employees’ pension scheme as they drove the company off the edge of a cliff.

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 )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google 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

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.