Daily headlines

December 2018 drilling headlines

181202 Tinker Lane TLCLG

IGas Tinker Lane shale gas site at dawn, 2 December 2018. Photo: Tinkerlane.co.uk

Drilling for shale gas is underway at Tinker Lane in Nottinghamshire and site construction has begun at Biscathorpe in Lincolnshire. Rathlin Energy has given notice of work starting at its West Newton-A site. December could see Cuadrilla resume fracking at Preston New Road. There are also High Court hearings on injuntions and judicial reviews.

You can keep up with the news here with DrillOrDrop’s digest of headlines about fracking, shale and onshore oil and gas, updated daily. Click here for headlines from previous months

Top headlines this month

  • Fracking and earth tremors resume at Preston New Road – largest tremor, at 1.5ML, so far
  • Financing finalised for Rathlin Energy’s East Yorkshire licence area – first delivery to West Newton-A
  • 8,000+ signature letter calling for halt to fracking handed to Downing Street
  • Lincolnshire County Council approves retrospective permission for security offices at Egdon’s Biscathorpe site
  • Death announced of Tony Almond, who worked on oil and gas policy for the HSE
  • Cuadrilla restores Grange Road at Singleton, the last of its early shale gas sites

14 December 2018

Angus and IGas protest injunctions renewed at High Court. DrillOrDrop report

Red-level tremor stops fracking at Cuadrilla’s Preston New Road site as total seismic events top 50. DrillOrDrop report

Lancashire fracking votes: “watershed moment for shale” or “political manipulation”? DrillOrDrop report on reaction to last night’s Lancashire County Council meeting

13 December 2018

Fracking earth tremor felt like a car hitting a building – council told. DrillOrDrop report

Lancashire calls for government funding of anti-fracking protest policing. DrillOrDrop report

IGas injunction on anti-fracking protests is most restrictive yet – High Court told. DrillOrDrop report

181213 Sudama Das Ross Monaghan

Sudama Das (third from the right) with supporters after the verdict at Nottinghamshire Crown Court. Photo: Ross Monaghan

Anti-fracking protester accused of interfering with Ineos Upstream’s equipment used to explore for shale gas in Nottinghamshire has been acquitted by a jury of offences under the Computer Misuse Act. DrillOrDrop report

12 December 2018

Injunctions mean that people who trespass on a UK fracking site face a bigger maximum penalty than if they committed the same offence at Buckingham Palace, High Court told. DrillOrDrop report on challenge to Angus and IGas injunctions

Barclaycard dropped as sponsor of Neil Young’s Hyde Park concert in row over investment in fracking. DrillOrDrop report, BBC News

Acquisition of interest in Arreton oil discovery. UK Oil & Gas plc announces it has entered into talks with Solo Oil to acquire its 30% shareholding in PEDL331 licence at Arreton in the Isle of Wight. The deal for £90,450 in cash and 17.989M shares would give UKOG 95% stake in the PEDL. Island Echo

11 December 2018

Largest earth tremor so far at Cuadrilla’s fracking site – 1.5ML – following series of micro-seismic events DrillOrDrop report, Energy Voice, The Guardian, Shropshire Star, BBC News, Reuters, FT, Times, Independent, Visitor, City Am, Daily Express

181211 bgs earthquakes 1

Extract from British Geological Survey record of seismic activity in the UK, 11 December 2018

Lancashire councillors call for halt to Cuadrilla fracking operations to carry out an inquiry into earth tremors. DrillOrDrop report, Blackpool Gazette (Fracking supporters rejected calls for halt to testing in Lancashire)

Criminal law won’t work with anti-fracking protests, High Court told in Angus and IGas injunction cases. DrillOrDrop report

Government clarifies controversial Claire Perry fracking industry meeting. Business Green reports that BEIS has included Claire Perry’s industry round-table on the quarterly transparency data.

Rhiannon Adam takes us inside the fracking debate. The British Journal of Photography reports on a competition commission, sponsored by Ecotricity, photographing UK fracking

10 December 2018

Cuadrilla resumes fracking – first seismic activity recorded at site for five weeks. DrillOrDrop report, Lancashire Evening Post

Secret cameras used to protest Ineos seismic testing equipment”, trial told. DrillOrDrop report of trial of fracking opponent under the Computer Misuse Act

181210 Ellesmere Port map

Map compiled by Frack Free Ellesmere Port and Upton showing the location of the IGas site and local amenities

IGas exploration plans in Ellesmere Port are in “the heart of a community”, campaigners warn. DrillOrDrop report on how residents of new homes complain they were not told about testing plans for the Portside well.

Anti-fracking protesters are found guilty of aggravated trespassing at a Derbyshire drilling company site. Ripley and Heanor News reports that Scott Breen and Rosalyn Massey were found guilty of aggravated trespass after they took part in a lock-on protest preventing a lorry entering PR Marriott Ltd at Danesmoor in Derbyshire.

Public health body completely divests from fossil fuels over climate concerns.  Energy Voice reports the UK charity and member organisation has said it has now fully divested from oil, gas and coal companies.

Friends of the Earth welcomes environmental rights recommendation. The organisation welcomes the recommendation of the First Minister’s expert advisory group on human rights that the right to a health and safe environment is enshrined in Scots law.

9 December 2018

Inside the Dutch province where gas extraction tremors left houses crumbling. The Telegraph reports on the impact of earthquakes triggered by gas extraction.

Mexico to cancel February auctions for oil and gas blocks. Reuters reports that Mexico’s energy secretary, Rocio Nahle, said the new president would cancel two bidding rounds for oil and gas blocks, including Mexico’s first shale areas on offer.

8 December 2018

Guest weekend long read: Frack Free United makes the case in this DrillOrDrop guest post against the government’s policy on shale gas and hydraulic fracturing

7 December 2018

Nearly 300 tonnes of oil and chemicals “accidentally released” into North Sea in 2017. Energy Voice reports on assessment by the industry body Oil and Gas UK, which said 279 of hazardous material, of which 23 tonnes was oil, was accidentally released in 2017 into the North Sea. There were 451 accidental oil and chemical releases, with more than half reaching the marine environment.

SNP accused of “climate hypocrisy” over North Sea support. Energy Voice reports that environmental campaigners have accused the SNP of “climate hypocrisy” after an Aberdeen MP backed new tax breaks for the North Sea oil industry.

6 December 2018

Obituary: Tony Almond of the Health and Safety Executive. DrillOrDrop report

Public meeting over Ellesmere Port fracking plan. Cheshire Live reports on a public meeting about IGas  plans for gas testing at a site in Ellesmere Port. See also DrillOrDrop December events

Egdon Resources expect to complete Biscathorpe in February. Morning Star reports that the drilling company has updated its timetable for the Biscathorpe well in Lincolnshire.

5 December 2018

Shale gas “not compatible with decarbonisation targets” – Welsh planning policy. DrillOrDrop report, Business Green, South Wales Argus, Upstream Online (1/12/2018)

Grange Hill Cuadrilla

Cuadrilla’s Grange Hill site at Singleton returned to farmland, December 2018. Photo: Cuadrilla Resources

Chapter closes on Cuadrilla’s early fracking plans – shale gas site restored nearly seven hears after original deadline. DrillOrDrop report, Blackpool Gazette (4/12/2018), Lancashire Business View

Egdon declares £321K loss. Accounts for the year to 31 July 2018 show Egdon Resources UK Ltd recorded a loss of £321,000, compared with a loss of £1,138,622 for the year before. The company wrote off £1,038,000 in exploration costs and waived a loan from group companies of £1,282,964

Doriemus raises $308,750 to fund oil testing in the UK. Doriemus reports the result of a placing of 4.7m shares to fund its share of well testing at Horse Hill and Brockham.

4 December 2018

200 MPs call for parliamentary pension fund to divest from fossil fuels. DrillOrDrop report, Energy Voice

Bank increases stake in IGas. DrillOrDrop report

First delivery to Rathlin’s West Newton oil and gas site – plus company reveals details of work plans. DrillOrDrop report

Indigenous gas production vital, IOG says. Energy Voice reports comments by Andrew Hockey, chief executive of the London-listed North Sea company, Independent Oil and Gas. He says:

 “With cold snaps you can get spikes in the price of gas, so it’s important for wholesalers and planners to have more indigenous gas to avoid volatility in the market.”

3 December 2018

Minister’s attendance at shale industry roundtable was not “dropping in” – Labour spokesman tells MPs. DrillOrDrop report

Completion of West Newton farm-in. Union Jack Oil announces that the OGA has approved its farm-in agreement with Rathlin Energy for PEDL183 in East Yorkshire. The agreement gives Union Jack and Humber Oil a 16.665% interest each in the PEDL.

Ink dries on Reabold’s swoop for Rathlin shares. Energy Voice reports that the investment company, Reabold Resources, has completed its £3m acquisition of 37% of Rathlin Energy UK.

Biscathorpe security cabins approved. Lincolnshire County Council approves, with two abstentions, retrospective planning application for security cabins at Egdon’s Biscathorpe drilling site.

181203 LCC retrospective permission Ross Monaghan

Small protest outside Lincolnshire County Council after approval of retrospective planning permission for security cabins at Egdon’s Biscathorpe site. Photo: still from video by Ross Monaghan

David Attenborough: collapse of civilisation is on the horizon. The Guardian reports on Sir David Attenborough’s speech to the UN climate change summit in Poland. He says:

“The world’s people have spoken. Time is running out. They want you, the decision-makers, to act now. Leaders of the world, you must lead. The continuation of civilisations and the natural world upon which we depend is in your hands.”

Lee Rowley: Fracking will concrete over the countryside and impact local communities. And for what? North East Derbyshire Conservative MP, Lee Rowley, writing for Politics Home, questions the impact on local communities and the scale off shale gas

Natascha Engel: Energy security and our climate are of crucial importance. They deserve a calm and rational debate. The new shale gas commissioner, writing for Politics Home, says she is keen to establish the facts around fracking and encourage calm, rational debate.

Opec summit: cut expected to balance price fall and global slowdown. The Guardian previews the Opec meeting on Thursday which could cut production by 500,000 barrels a day.

1 December 2018

Picture post: 8,000+ sign letter urging PM to ban fracking. DrillOrDrop report on hand-in and climate march and rally.

Events diary. DrillOrDrop listings of events in December 2018

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