Regulation

Regulator issues update on who has to drill where and when

West Newton

Rathlin Energy’s West Newton exploration site in PEDL183, 2014. Photo: DrillOrDrop

The Oil & Gas Authority has given details of where wells must be drilled by a group of companies that hold appraisal licences in England and Wales.

According to an update from the regulator issued this month, 14 companies must drill a total of at least 17 wells and test another 11 in the next five years. At least two wells must be hydraulically fracked.

The companies must also submit a total of 21 planning applications and 12 field development plans.

The update reveals that three companies – Rathlin Energy, UK Onshore and Sonorex – have been given extra time to submit plans, drill wells or acquire seismic data.

Rathlin Energy, operating in East Yorkshire, is among three companies that have also been set new commitments by the OGA. The others are: IGas in north Nottinghamshire/south Yorkshire and Kimmeridge Oil and Gas in West Sussex.

The update covers a total of 28 licence areas that have moved to the second or appraisal phase of their Petroleum Exploration and Development Licence (PEDL).

Under their licences, the companies must comply with work commitments, totalling 99 operations, before they can move to the final, production stage. The deadlines are separate from conditions in any planning permissions.

Analysis by DrillOrDrop shows that just under a third of the commitments are in licences in north west England (Cheshire, Lancashire and Merseyside). 19% are in the East Midlands, 17% in North and East Yorkshire and 17% in southern England.

Four of the PEDLs and 15% of the operations are in Welsh PEDLs. The Welsh Assembly takes over control of oil and gas licensing on 1 October 2018. But the OGA told DrillOrDrop:

“Until such time as the Welsh Government assumes responsibility for the licences in Wales, the OGA remains responsible for licensing policy and decision making.”

There are just over 200 onshore oil and gas licences in the UK, all of which have work commitments. About half the licences were issued under the most recent, 14th, round in 2015.

Broadford Bridge 170614 DrillOrDrop9small

KOGL’s Broadford Bridge site in PEDL234, 2017. Photo: DrillOrDrop

More time to meet work commitments

Extra 12 months

PEDL149 UK Onshore, Neath Port Talbot/Bridgend
Submit a Field Development Plan for retention area 2

PEDL157 Sonorex, Newport
Submit a Field Development Plan

PEDL183 Rathlin Energy, East Yorkshire
Complete geotechnical studies
Drill a well to 2,000m and test

Extra 24 months

PEDL100, UK Onshore, Neath Port Talbot/Bridgend
Reprocess British Coal seismic data
Submit a Field Development Plan
Submit a planning application for field development activity
Submit an updated Field Development Plan

PEDL148, UK Onshore, Neath Port Talbot/Bridgend
Submit Field Development Plan for retention area 1 and 2
Submit planning permission for field development activity

PEDL149, Uk Onshore, Neath Port Talbot/Bridgend
Submit a Field Development Plan for retention area 1
Submit a further planning application for field development activity
Submit a planning application for field development activity

PEDL157, Sonorex, Newport
Drill one well

PEDL183, Rathlin Energy, East Yorkshire
Acquire and interpret 15km2 new 3D or 50km 2D seismic data

180512 Tinker Lane Eric Walton3

IGas site at Tinker Lane, north Nottinghamshire, PEDL200, 12 May 2018. Photo: Eric Walton

New commitments added in July 2018

PEDL183, Rathlin Energy, East Yorkshire
Submit a Field Development Plan (Retention area 1)
Submit planning application for drilling a well (Retention area 1)
Drill a well (Retention Area 2)
Submit planning application for field development (Retention Area 2)

PEDL200, IGas, Nottinghamshire/South Yorkshire
Drill, hydraulically fracture and flow test a well
Submit planning application to drill a well

PEDL234, KOGL, West Sussex
Acquire and process 50km of 2D seismic
Drill and test a further exploration well through the Kimmeridge limestone
Drill and test an appraisal well or sidetrack
Drill and test an exploration well through the Kimmeridge limestone on trend with Godley Bridge 1 Portland gas discovery
Submit Field Development Plan

Horse Hill 160202

Well testing at Horse Hill site in Surrey in PEDL137, 2014. Photo: Jon O’Houston

What has to be done when? 2018-2019

Commitments to be met by 30 September 2018

PEDL120, Ineos, North Yorkshire
Acquire new seismic data
Submit a revised Field Development Plan

PEDL137, HHDL, Surrey
Drill a Portland appraisal well of Horse Hill 1

PEDL164, Aurora, Lancashire
Submit a planning application to drill a well to 3000m or 50m into the Bowland High Group

Commitments to be met by 31 December 2018

PEDL200, IGas, Nottinghamshire/South Yorkshire
Drill one well

PEDL210, IGas, Lincolnshire
Acquire new seismic data

Commitments to be met by by 31 March 2019

PL213, Alkane, Derbyshire
Submit a planning application for a well

Commitments to be met by 30 June 2019

PEDL100, UK Onshore, Neath Port Talbot/Bridgend
Reprocess British Coal seismic data

PEDL146, IGas, North Yorkshire
Submit planning permission to drill a well

PEDL165, Cuadrilla, Lancashire
Acquire gravity and/or magnetic geophysical data
Drill and hydraulically fracture a horizontal well

PEDL169, IGas/Alkane, South Yorkshire
Complete new seismic acquisition

PEDL183, Rathlin, East Yorkshire
Drill a well to 2,000m and test

PEDL184, IGas, Cheshire/Flintshire/Wirral
Acquire new seismic data

PEDL190, IGas, Cheshire
Drill a well

PEDL201, Egdon, Leicestershire/Nottinghamshire
Submit a planning application for a well

PEDL202, Egdon/Alkane, Nottinghamshire
Submit a planning application for a well

PEDL244, Cuadrilla, West Sussex
Flow test the Balcombe 2z well

Commitments to be met by 30 September 2019

PEDL100, UK Onshore, Neath Port Talbot/Bridgend
Submit a planning application for field development activity

PEDL137, HHDL, Surrey
Drill a Kimmeridge appraisal well of Horse Hill 1

PEDL148, UK Onshore, Neath Port Talbot/Bridgend
Submit planning permission for field development activity

PEDL149, UK Onshore, Neath Port Talbot/Bridgend
Submit a further planning application for field development activity
Submit a planning application for field development activity

PEDL157, Sonorex, Newport
Drill one well

Commitments to be met by 31 December 2019

PEDL145, Ineos, Cheshire
Submit planning application for drilling

PEDL191, Egdon, Merseyside
Submit planning application for a well

PEDL209, Egdon, Lincolnshire
Submit planning application for a well

PEDL234, KOGL, West Sussex
Drill and test an exploration well through the Kimmeridge limestone on trend with Godley Bridge 1 Portland gas discovery

9 replies »

  1. Supposedly experienced? drilling companies repeatedly going back cap in hand to ask for more time. Could it be that actually they are not experienced , don’t have the necessary technical knowledge, and therefore should not have been issued licences in the first place?
    The evidence to date is clear that conditions of the PEDL’s are not being met.

    • When the Government takes control out of the hands of local councillors who normally go against their OWN planning officers advice, making uneducated refusals then we can get on with the job of producing the energy the U.K so desperately needs…

        • And you believe that? Look at your energy bills for the last few months and keep track of them for future months. Up up up, because we are importing more and more gas…

  2. maybe if these companys didn,t have to keep having public enquires & appeals going on or months / years then maybe they wouldn,t need to ask for more time.

    • Maybe if they knew how to carry out small fracking operations without causing earthquakes and buckling wells they may have got a bit further. Maybe more time could have been saved if it didn’t need the HSE to explain who was responsible for and when cement bond logs were required.

      Stupidly underestimating the power of a well organised community, serious technical failings and not understanding the planning system has caused years of delay. There must be some very very worried speculators out there.

      Still there’s always the ‘won’t be long now’ and ‘this time next year’ well worn record to keep playing.

      I wonder how things went with other Cuadrilla fracking operations across Europe?

  3. “well worn record to keep playing” JP – I think this is the ninety third time you have posted this……

    Why not enlighten us on what a cement bond log is, the different kinds, how they work, what they measure, quantitative and or qualitative etc.?

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