Regulation

Angus gets permit approval for appraisal but not production

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Delivery to Angus Energy’s Brockham oil site on 20 December 2018. Photo: Brockham Oil Watch

The Environment Agency has given the go-ahead to Angus Energy for appraisal at its Brockham site in Surrey. But the company does not yet have consent for production.

The local campaign group, Brockham Oil Watch, described this as “another hastily made decision to accommodate an operator” that would fail to reassure residents.

In a briefing issued today, the Environment Agency (EA) said Angus had complied with three pre-conditions to an updated environmental permit.

But the EA said one of the pre-conditions, PO 01, on a gas management plan, had been split into two parts.

This pre-condition had been approved for appraisal on 11 December, the EA said. But it added:

“We have not yet approved PO 01 for the production phase”.

The other preconditions, on acid wash and hot oil treatment of the well, were approved yesterday and today, the EA said.

Angus told shareholders yesterday it had begun the flow test programme at the site near Dorking.

181216 Brockham Brockham Protectors

Angus Energy site at Brockham, Surrey, on 16 December 2018. Photo: Brockham Protectors

The EA issued the permit with pre-conditions last month, without a normal “minded-to” consultation. It said this was because flow tests were imminent on the BrX4Z well which targets the Kimmeridge formation.

The EA said it had carried out a total of four recent announced and unannounced visits to the site. There had been no permit breaches and Compliance Assessment Reports of the visits, known as CAR forms, would be published in January, it said.

The permit does not include consent for reinjection of produced water at Brockham.

The EA said today:

“We have ensured the latest plans associated with the environmental permit do not have a connection drawn between the processing area and the reinjection well. When on site we have checked there is no physical connection to the reinjection well. In line with the environmental permit, no re-injection is taking place at the Brockham oilfield.”

The EA added that during inspections of the site, including one today, it did not find acid stored or used on the site.

“Desperate attempt to gain regulatory control”

Brockham Oil Watch criticised the EA yesterday for failing to keep it informed on the pre-conditions. In a statement this afternoon, the group said:

“First the EA issues a new permit in a desperate attempt to gain some regulatory control over activities at Brockham whilst denying the due public consultation stage, and then they go back on their own requirements written in this new permit.

“This is another example of the weakness of the system which allows for constant moving of the goal posts. It is hardly reassuring for the local people, and certainly not gold standard.”

The group questioned why the pre-condition on gas management, PO 01, had been split into two parts covering appraisal and production.

“There was no mention of this in new permit issued recently, which states that PO 01 must be agreed ‘prior to commencement of appraisal or production operations in the Kimmeridge Clay Formation from BRX4-Z’.

“There was no mention of this split in the CAR dated 29 Nov either. This looks like another hastily made decision to accommodate an operator that has little regard for the regulatory process or the local community.”

The group had complained that the EA was treating its questions as FOI requests, with no obligation to respond in under 20 working days. It asked more questions today about the divided pre-condition PO 01.

“There is no clarification of what is appraisal and what is production. These are not terms that the EA use in their regulations.

“EA officers told us in a meeting attended by CPRE and eight councillors from parish to county level that ‘appraisal’ and ‘production’ have no meaning in the EA’s framework.

“Can the EA confirm what these terms mean exactly in the briefing issued today? And how does this square with the planning application covering appraisal only?”

12 replies »

  1. What a desperate attempt to misrepresent facts. It’s an 18-month production testing phase. All boxes ticked, regulators satisfied, they proceed as planned with the 18-month production testing.

  2. Appraisal follows exploration, as production follows appraisal. Thats the way it happens all round the world in the oil and gas industry. Its hardly a revelation.

  3. Whilst bias is always expected it would appear-once again-as far as Angus is concerned there is a special emphasis to make something out of nothing. This is now becoming close to a vendetta.

    Shame really, as then expectation of some objectivity is trashed.

    • Ha! Ha! Those personal mirrors have been working overtime haven’t they? The vendetta clearly comes primarily from these industry hacks as we have witnessed many times before.

      Shame on you.

  4. First “story” suggests permit not being correctly applied, second “story” shows that it is.

    All pretty straight forward. False speculation, but difficult to determine that through the text. Two stories out of some false speculation. No wonder Angus rarely react to being asked to comment.

    Of course, those who may have been interested to see what might be the real situation here could have been looking at the process at HH, and might have been thinking-all pretty straight forward and logical. Same pathway being followed.

    • Dear me, all we see here is desperation to rewrite the narrative and reframe what was clearly said.

      One moderator is enough we thought Martian?

      Two, or three or four attempted additional false flag moderators are just IR8 self indulgence aren’t they?

  5. Independent Journalism on fracking Tut Tut Ruth Hayhurst.No fracking in the south of England at Brockham or any other site.Conventional oil extraction.ONLY .Scaremongering at it worst .You should be ashamed of yourselves Merry Xmas .Viva home grown Uk Energy.Angus Energy .Ukog .Good Luck in 2019

    • Hi Gordon
      The site description states: Any donation, however small, will help us continue to report independently on fracking, onshore oil and gas and the reactions to it. We do aim to cover a range of onshore oil and gas activity, including that carried out by Angus in the South.

      We are always careful not to suggest that Angus are engaged in High Volume Hydraulic Fracturing (the government’s definition of fracking).

  6. “Re-write the narrative”????

    You are obviously unaware of what Angus previously stated about this matter some while ago, elsewhere. It was already written, re-writing then followed.

    Not to worry. You can catch up over Christmas and just remember that now you know the difference between red diesel and vegetable oil your taste buds will have a whole new experience, thanks to an industry hack!

    Of course, PhilipP now knows to get his turkey money from a bank rather than a totally different type of organisation, so all in all there should now be the possibility of an enjoyable Christmas for all.

    See you in the New Year. Will be busy in between with the good boys and girls.

    Santa.

    • Ha! Ha! Aww! What do we see here? Someone trying to wheedle around us to gain favour and shakily dragging out that scribbled little list?

      We know that little game dont we boys and girls?

      Do we trust them for one little second?

      Nooooooo! We dont!! Neveeeeerrrrr!! Boooooo!!!!

      Will we fall for that grubby old game from behind the Paunch and Judith show curtain dont we boys and girls?

      Perhaps if we all shout loud enough, we can tell them what we think of their miserable little scribbled crayon lists tucked away behind their total black out blinker curtain before it wears away through overuse?

      RUUUUUBBBBIIIIIISSSSSSHHHHHHH!!!!!

      There you go, children will always tell the truth.

      And a Very Merry Christmas to children everywhere, your future will be given back to you whether these recidivists like it or not.

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