The communities’ secretary is still considering an application for long-term oil production at West Newton-A in East Yorkshire.
The proposal, which also included four new wells and more than doubling the site size, was approved by East Riding of Yorkshire Council in March 2022.
But before the formal decision notice was issued, the local Conservative county councillor, Jacob Birch, asked for the application to be called in.
This means the recently-appointed secretary of state, Greg Clark, could decide the plans.
Yesterday Mr Clark’s department wrote to Cllr Birch:
“I can confirm that your request for the above planning application is still under active consideration.
“I hope you will understand that I cannot comment on the matter further, as to do so might prejudice the Secretary of State’s position.
“I will of course contact you in due course when a decision is made. In the meantime if you have any further queries please do not hesitate to contact me.”
Cllr Birch had argued that East Yorkshire’s planning committee had sought to determine the application mainly on concerns about energy security resulting from the conflict in Ukraine.
He said neither council officers, nor the applicant, Rathlin Energy, had responded to concerns about the impact of the scheme on greenhouse gas emissions and national targets for reducing fossil fuel use.
He also raised concerns about the impacts of heavy lorries on narrow roads and tall equipment on the landscape.
Cllr Birch said the application relied on tree planting outside the site planning boundary to make it acceptable. Tall equipment would not be screened by tree planting by the end of the production phase and the proposed planting would be outside the control of Rathlin Energy, he said.