Daily headlines

October 2022 headlines

Keep up to date with October 2022’s news with our digest of daily updated headlines about the business, regulation and campaigns around UK fracking, shale, and onshore oil and gas.

Onshore oil and gas licences in northern England. Source: UK Onshore Geophysical Library

Click here for headlines from previous months. Please let us know if we’ve missed something important  contact@DrillOrDrop.com


Monday 31 October 2022

Cuadrilla’s fracking site should be abandoned – campaigners. DrillOrDrop report

Sunday 30 October 2022

DUP has ‘no official position’ on fracking says Edwin Poots after DUP MPs voted against UK ban. Belfast Live reports comments by the environment minister that the DUP “hasn’t made a decision” on whether it supports fracking or not.

Britain faces £100m loss over drilling at biggest new oil field, says research. The Observer reports the government faces making a loss of more than £100m if drilling at the UK’s largest undeveloped oil field is approved, according to new research examining a tax break introduced by Rishi Sunak.

Saturday 29 October 2022

Government ban fracking but Nottinghamshire ‘threat remains’ say residents. West Bridgford Wire reports campaigners opposed to the Misson Springs site have said the threat of fracking remains. They call for the site to be restored and an alll-out ban on fracking nationally.

Friday 28 October 2022

Fracking industry warns of “great economic, environmental and geopolitical cost” from renewed moratorium. DrillOrDrop report

IGas hints at legal action as government issues new WMS on fracking moratorium. DrillOrDrop report

Fracking in Lancashire: Ban “beggars believe”, says Cuadrilla chief executive. DrillOrDrop report, Lancaster Guardian, Energy Live News (31/10/22)

Air pollution increased 274% during pre-fracking operations at Kirby Misperton – new study. DrillOrDrop report

Centrica: Rough gas storage site is back up and running at 20% capacity. PA and others report that the Rough storage site, closed five years ago, has been brought back online in time for winter.

Rishi Sunak criticised for skipping COP27 climate summit. BBC News reports the prime minister has been accused of “a failure of leadership” for not attending the COP27 climate summit next month.

Reports: PM mulling expansion of windfall tax on oil and gas profits. Business Green reports the government is said to be exploring options after Shell reveals it received a tax rebate from UK last quarter, despite bumper profits.

Angus Energy spuds sidetrack. Angus Energy reports the sidetrack programme at its Saltfleetby gas site began today with testing of blow-out preventers in advance of spudding the well.

Thursday 27 October 2022

AJ Lucas reacts to reinstatement of fracking moratorium. A statement from Cuadrilla’s owner, AJ Lucas to the Australian stock exchange notes the plan to reintroduce the moratorium on fracking in England. The company says it will evaluate the impact and any further details from the UK government. AJ Lucas said it would “provide further information as available and appropriate”

IEA forecasts fossil fuel demand will peak this decade. The FT comments by Fatih Birol, head of the IEA, that the “golden age of gas” is coming to an end. “Together with the decline in coal and oil that we are already expecting, we now see a peak around 2030 for all fossil fuels”, he says.

UK infrastructure at risk from climate crisis due to “extreme weakness” in government. The Guardian reports on conclusions by the joint committee on national security strategy that evasion of responsibility by UK government is “severe dereliction of duty”. The Telegraph reports on the committee finding that reliance on electricity to hit net zero poses a major national security risk.

Oil giant Shell reveals plans to hike dividend as quarterly profits more than double. CNBC

“Profits show scale of the pain of cost of living crisis”. Friends of the Earth Scotland responded to the profits:

“The announcement of yet another obscene profit for Shell shows the scale of the pain that these companies are inflicting on the public. While oil companies continue to make record breaking profits, ordinary people are facing skyrocketing energy bills and millions are being pushed into fuel poverty.”

“Bosses and shareholders at Shell are being allowed to get even richer by exploiting one of our most basic needs. Shell is also worsening climate breakdown and extreme weather by continuing to invest and lock us into new oil and gas projects for decades to come.”

“Eye-watering profits off the back of the energy crisis”. Tessa Khan, director Uplift, reacted to Shell’s profits announcement:

“Shell is making eye-watering profits off the back of the energy crisis, while many millions of people in this country are forced in fuel poverty. It’s nothing short of immoral. Meanwhile, the UK government is just sitting on its hands, instead of trying to claw some of that money back. How can Rishi Sunak talk of compassion and ask people to trust him and not immediately replace the pitiful windfall tax he introduced in May with a credible one. This means backdating it and closing the gaping loophole, which will see UK taxpayers effectively handing Shell a £200million subsidy to develop a North Sea gas field called Jackdaw from which Shell will take all the profit with minimal public gain. It will do nothing to lower our bills.” 

Shell hasn’t been paying UK windfall tax as profits double. Bloomberg UK reports that Shell says it has been investing heavily in new UK gas supplies. Guardian, Reuters

Graham Stuart to remain as Climate Minister, as latest ‘green’ ministerial roles confirmed. Business Green reports that Graham Stuart had been reappointed climate minister, but he will not attend cabinet.

No evidence for Jacob Rees-Mogg’s claims that Russia funded anti-fracking campaigns – government admits. Open Democracy reports that the business department has no evidence to support claims made by the former business secretary during a parliamentary session on lifting the moratorium on fracking in England.

Strip climate sceptic thinktank of charitable status, MPs urge. The Guardian reports that a cross-party group of MPs has complained to the Charity Commission about the charitable status of the Global Warming Policy Foundation. The complaint, supported by the Good Law Project, claims the GWPF does not meet its aims as charity and is, in fact, a lobbying organisation.

Wednesday 26 October 2022

Fracking moratorium to be reinstated – pm. DrillOrDrop report on hints at prime minister’s questions from Rishi Sunak that the 2019 moratorium on fracking will be reinstated. BBC News, Press Association, Financial Review, Financial Times, The National, Mirror, Evening Standard, Sky News

Campaigners welcome reinstatement of fracking moratorium plus industry reaction. DrillOrDrop report, Independent (27/10/22), BBC News, Blackpool Gazette, Times, Market Watch, Proactive Investors, This is Money

Surrey rejects IGas plans for grey hydrogen production . DrillOrDrop report

Alok Sharma: UK must ‘explain and demonstrate’ how new oil and gas drilling aligns with net zero. Business Green reports that the COP26 president should explain how opening up more North Sea oil and gas can be compatible with meeting UK climate commitments. He also says ramping up clean energy investment and insulating homes should be top priorities for Rishi Sunak.

World is on crash course to 2.5C warming, UN warns ahead of Cop27. The Independent reports on a UN report which calls for more ambitious action to halt “the devastating consequences of runaway climate change”. The UN says the world is on course for around 2.5C of warming unless governments significantly strengthen their plans and implement them immediately. BBC News, Press Association, Carbon Brief

Record leap in methane levels as greenhouse gases reach new highs in 2021. The Independent reports on the World Meteorological Organisation annual greenhouse gas bulletin, which says the world saw a record jump in methane levels in the atmosphere last year and main heat-trapping greenhouse gases reaching new highs.

Lothian pension fund fossil fuel ‘excuse’ compared to defence of slave trade. Edinburgh Live reports criticism by East Lothian councillors that the Lothian Pension fund has seen fossil fuel investments rise by 40% in the past year, despite an updated investment strategy, said to be more in line with the Paris Agreement.

Tuesday 25 October 2022

2019 manifesto is Conservative mandate – new PM Rishi Sunak. DrillOrDrop report

Government waives £10bn in green ‘tax’ for UK’s biggest polluters. Open Democracy reports that ExxonMobil is among oil & gas firms handed “pollution permits” under the Emissions Trading Scheme.

Just Stop Oil protesters spray paint HQ of climate sceptic think tank. PA reports that two protesters sprayed orange paint across the front of 55 Tufton Street in Westminster, the offices of the Global Warming Policy Foundaton.

Schlumberger rebrands as SLB. The oilfield services giant announces its new name – SLB – “underscoring the company’s vision for a decarbonized energy future”.

Monday 24 October 2022

Rishi Sunak selected as new leader of the Conservative Party.

Five ways the new PM must tackle climate and energy crises. Friends of the Earth says Rishi Sunak needs to confirm that the fracking moratorium will say.

He’s a believer: Will Sunak rebuild green agenda torn up by Truss? The Guardian reports that environmental groups see the new PM as welcome relief but restoring climate cre4dentials will be difficult.

Huge UK public support for direct action to protect environment – poll. The Guardian reports that a new poll has found that 66% of people back nonviolent action and 75% support solar power being installed on farmland.

Rig installed at Angus Energy’s Saltfleetby gas site in Lincolnshire

Greenpeace activists occupy parliament with message for new PM. Greenpeace UK reports that activists brought energy bills to the corridor outside the House of Commons and read the testimonies of people worried about the costs. The organisation said government chaos is costing lives and it’s costing the climate. 

Photo: Greenpeace UK

XR Cambridge protest against Schlumberger. XR Cambridge and XR Youth Cambridge report members are continuing protests against the oilfield services company Schlumberger today using a metal tripod to prevent vehicle access to the company’s site in Cambridge.

Photo: XR Cambridge

Activists throw mashed potatoes over £97.4m Monet painting. Energy Voice reports that the climate group Last Generation threw the ptoatoes at Monet’s Les Meules at the Barberini Museum, in Potsdam., Germany. The painting was protected by glass.

Union Jack announces first special dividend and share buyback programme. Union Jack Oil announces a gross dividend of 0.8p per ordinary share, a total payment of £902,927. The company also plans to buy back shares in the open market.

Greenwashing faces fresh curbs in UK regulator’s crackdown. The FT reports that FCA rules will government terms such as ESG [environmental, social and governance] in fund marketing

Sunday 23 October 2022

New fossil fuels ‘incompatible’ with 1.5C goal, comprehensive analysis finds. Carbon Brief reports on a new study by the International Institute for Sustainable Development which found a “large consensus” across all published studies that developing new oil and gas fields is “incompatible” with the 1.5C target

How the Tory Party have been shifted towards climate scepticism. The National reports that Truss’s election as Conservative leader represented a shift towards climate change sceptic policies.

Climate crisis poses ‘growing threat’ to health in UK, says expert. The Guardian reports comments by Prof Dame Jenny Harries, the chief executive of the UK Health Security Agency, that climate crisis poses a “significant and growing threat” to health in the UK.

Saturday 22 October 2022

‘No means no’: Defiant Nanas vow to fight shale gas industry as fracking ‘threat’ looms. The Express reports that campaigners in Lancashire have returned to Cuadrilla’s Preston New Road site after the government lifted the moratorium on fracking.

Just Stop Oil bankrolled by fossil fuel heiress whose cash pays activists to protest. The Times reports that Just Stop Oil is being funded by a coalition of wealthy individuals in Hollywood, including the heiress Aileen Gerry.

Net zero target casts a shadow over Britain’s quest for gas lifeline. The Telegraph reports that talks between Britain and Qatar over long-term energy import agreements were complicated by the goal for net zero emissions by 2050.

Work continues on mobilisation at Angus Energy Saltfleetby gas site.

Friday 21 October 2022

How green are the Tory leadership candidates this time round? The Guardian reports on the green credentials of the likely candidates.

Cabinet minister demands investigation into ‘manhandling’ of Tory MPs in fracking vote. The Independent reports that Anne-Marie Trevelyan has called for an investigation into the “manhandling” of Tory MPs to force them to back the government on fracking.

“The G20 has failed to deliver”: Study slams continued increase in fossil fuel subsidies. Business Green reports on a study by New Climate Transparency which reveals fossil fuel production subsidies surged to the highest level on record in 2021. Also reported by the Independent

‘Radical reinvention’: Lloyds Banking Group vows to stop financing new oil and gas projects. Business Green reports that it will no longer directly finance the development of new oil and gas projects. Campaigners hail the move as setting “a new standard for the UK banking industry”.

Angus Energy rig delivery at Saltfleetby gas site.

France becomes latest country to leave controversial energy charter treaty. The Guardian reports President Macron said quitting the ECT, which protests fossil fuel investors from policy changes that might threaten their profits was coherent with the Paris Climate agreement.

Energy bosses call on government to pause renewables windfall tax legislation. Business Green reports the renewables industry is urging the business secretary to rethink legislation that would give government sweeping powers over the energy market.

PR firm accused of greenwashing big oil is helping organise COP27. Open Democracy reports that Hill+Knowlton Strategies, which has worked for ExxonMobill, Shell, Chevron and Saudi Aramaco, is managing communications for Egypt’s presidency of the UN climate Conference.

Thursday 20 October 2022

Liz Truss resigns after 44 days as prime minister. She is the shortest-serving prime minister in British history. An election for her replacement, the among Conservative MPs is expected to be held within a week. Jeremy Hunt, the new chancellor, has said he will not stand.

Did fracking break the government? DrillOrDrop asks whether yesterday’s chaotic vote was the final straw for Liz Truss.

City of York Council votes against fracking. Councillors vote unanimously for a motion which said fracking poses “unacceptable risks to people, livestock, wildlife, the climate and the environment”. Fracking is not the answer to soaring energy bills and inflation, it said. Investment in clean energy, public transport and energy efficiency would create more jobs, deliver energy security and boost the local economy. DrillOrDrop “No fracking” tracking Reports by the Press and the Yorkshire Post (25/10/22).

‘I’m shedding tears of rage!’ How the Tories’ ‘war on nature’ outraged everyone from the RSPB to farmers. The Guardian reports that Liz Truss’s ministers seem determined to rip up environmental protections. But they’re facing resistance from an extraordinary alliance of wildlife charities and green-minded Conservatives.

The Conservatives are waging a war on nature – it must stop. Stanley Johnson, writing in the Independent, says Jacob Rees-Mogg must scrap the proposed Retained EU Law Bill, or at least kick it into the long grass.

‘Put up or shut up’: can Big Oil prove the case for carbon capture? The FT big read says “lavish US tax breaks are transforming the case for technology that traps and stores carbon dioxide. Critics say it is still a green boondoggle.” 

UK’s Lloyds ditches project finance for new oil and gas fields. Reuters reports Britain’s biggest domestic bank said it would not support direct financing to develop new oil and gas fields. The website oil and gas loans were 0.2% of Lloyds’ lending. [The Co-operative Bank says it has not funded fossil fuel production for more than 20 years]

Wednesday 19 October 2022

MPs vote down Labour’s bid to ban fracking. DrillOrDrop report. Other coverage: Business Green, Independent, Times, Bloomberg, Leigh Journal (22/10/22), Bolton News (23/10/22), J News (22/10/22), Wirral Globe (22/10/22), NW Mail (21/10/22), On the Wight (20/10/22), Hampshire Live (20/10/22), Bury Times (21/10/22), Somerset County Gazette (20/10/22), Gloucestershire Live (21/10/22), Evening Standard, Lancs Live (20/10/22), Proactive Investors (20/10/22), Grantham Journal (24/10/22)

How MPs voted in the debate. DrillOrDrop report, Conservative Home

Chaos at fracking vote – reaction. DrillOrDrop report, Independent, Guardian, BBC News, ITV, Sunday Post (23/10/22), Guardian live news, Stroud News (20/10/22), NW ITV, Shropshire Star, Oxford Mail (20/10/22)

Prime minister announces consultation on gauging fracking consent. DrillOrDrop report

Jacob Rees-Mogg faces legal challenge over lifting the moratorium on fracking in England. DrillOrDrop report, ENDS Report (20/10/22)

Fracking caused daily earthquakes at UK’s only active site. The Guardian reports findings from the Lib Dems that fracking caused the equivalent of an earthquake every day at the UK’s only fracked shale gas site. DrillOrDrop published details of induced seismicity recorded by the BGS from the Preston New Road site in 2018 and 2019 .

Europa repays loan to Union Jack. Union Jack Oil announces Europa has repaid a £1m loan, first reported on 9 Septyember 2022.

HSBC censured over climate advert. The Advertising Standards Authority rules that HSBC billboard posters on the bank’s climate claims were misleading. Future marketing featuring environmental claims must be adequately qualified and do not omit material information about its contribution to carbon dioxide and greenhouse gas emissions.

Tuesday 18 October 2022

MPs quiz climate minister on regulating fracking earthquakes. DrillOrDrop report

Tory MPs mull backing Labour attempt to force binding fracking vote. The Guardian reports dozens of MPs have written to the business secretary in opposition to fracking.

Labour calls on Tories to seize opportunity to end fracking ‘once and for all’. PA, via the Belfast Telegraph, reports that Labour is calling on Tory MPs to seize an opportunity to end fracking once and for all by backing a move to pave the way for a vote on the issue.

Monday 17 October 2022

Requisition of general meeting for Reabold Resources. Reabold Resources reports it has received a letter from Pershing Nominees, which owns 6.93%, calling for a general meeting to consider resolutions to replace the board with four new directors of its choosing. Reabold says the meeting requisition is not valid.

Energy bill help to be reduced from April, says Jeremy Hunt. BBC News reports comments from the new chancellor that the scheme to cap all household energy bills for two years will be cut from April 2023.

M25 delays: Just Stop Oil protesters climb Dartford Crossing QEII bridge forcing closure. The Independent reports that Just Stop Oil protesters have climbed to the top of the Queen Elizabeth II bridge at Dartford.

The Guardian view on Liz Truss’s U-turn: a fading premiership won’t be missed. The Guardian editorial reports that the prime minister is sticking with her party after a budget reversal but the party is not sticking with her.

Sunday 16 October 2022

Tory rebels vow to bury fracking as they urge Liz Truss to make policy U-turn. The Telegraph reports MP s have said the prime minister is now too weak politically to push ahead with plans to lift the moratorium on shale gas exploration.

Rees-Mogg accused of grabbing absolute power over UK energy industry. The Guardian reports that energy supplies have raised concerns with the business department that the legislation on the energy price guarantee allows the government to overrule Ofgem, the sector’s independent regulator.

Dangers posed by fracking and oil drilling. Professors Paul Ekins and Peter Newell, writing in The Guardian respond to what they call “extraordinary claims” by the climate minister, Graham Stuart, that fracking is good for the environment and economy. “The reality is quite different”, they say.

Just Stop Oil activists spray paint on Aston Martin showroom to ‘defy’ Suella Braverman. ITV reports Just Stop Oil protesters have sprayed paint over a luxury car showroom to “defy” the home secretary, who unveiled plans for a major crackdown on activism hours earlier.

Saturday 15 October 2022

Labour ‘will turn Britain into green growth superpower’, Sir Keir Starmer says. PA, via the Belfast Telegraph, reports the Labour leader promises more solar panels and home insulation.

Friday 14 October 2022

Miliband promises Misson that a Labour government would ban fracking. DrillOrDrop report of the shadow climate minister’s visit to Misson. Worksop Guardian (16/10/22)

Just Stop Oil activists throw soup at Van Gogh’s Sunflowers. The Guardian and Energy Voice report that activists have thrown tomato soup over the Sunflowers at the National Gallery in London, then glued themselves to the wall. The picture is protected by glass.

Thursday 13 October 2022

Keep fracking decisions local – Lancashire to tell ministers. DrillOrDrop reports that the county which hosted the UK’s only high volume fracking sites voted unanimously this afternoon to push ministers to keep planning decisions on the process with the local planning authority.

Officials consider measures to enforce restoration of IGas Notts shale site. DrillOrDrop reports on correspondence between Misson villages and the county council over the Springs Road site.

Government will not appeal against legal ruling that net zero strategy is unlawful. DrillOrDrop report, The Times

Conservative-controlled Fylde Council votes to ask government to stick to election manifesto on fracking. DrillOrDrop report and The Guardian, Blackpool Gazette (18/10/22)

Labour pledges to ban fracking ‘once and for all’ with opposition day motion. Sky News reports Labour has pledged to ban fracking “once and for all”, calling it “an unjust charter for earthquakes”.

Shares issue in oil company. Angus Energy announces it has issued 127.4 million shares follow receipt of an exercise of warrants notice by Aleph International Holdings. Angus Energy now has 2,891,664,391 ordinary shares.

Pendle residents vow to fight any fracking plans across Lancashire. Lancs Live reports residents in Pendle have said they will fight any local plans for natural gas fracking following the government’s ending of a moratorium, some borough councillors have claimed.

Lewes MP criticised for comments on scrapping fracking ban in Sussex. The Sussex Express reports councillors in Lewes have criticised the constituency’s Tory MP, Maria Caulfield, over the government’s controversial scrapping of the fracking ban.

Fact check: are the Tories right that British oil and gas is greener? The Guardian fact-checks Graham Stuart’s comments on the climate benefits of domestic oil and gas.

How to respond to Conservative MPs on fracking. Friends of the Earth publishes its response to Conservative arguments in favour of fracking.

Even more blocks put up for grabs in North Sea licensing round. Energy Voice reports the NSTA has offered a further 35 blocks in the 33rd offshore licensing round.

Multimillion-pound UK road scheme facing legal action on climate grounds. The Guardian report on a new legal challenge against a £810m-£950m scheme to build as 10-mile dual carriageway from Milton Keynes-Cambridge. The Transport Action Network has argued that the Department of Transport was wrong to assess only emissions from the scheme against the national carbon budget. It argues that it should have used sectoral, regional and local carbon budgets.

Wednesday 12 October 2022

Climate minister says fracking is good for the environment. DrillOrDrop report, Guardian, BBC News (13/10/22)

Surrey villagers say they will continue their fight against the UKOG gas site at Loxley near Dunsfold. DrillOrDrop report

Tory MPs plot fracking rebellion with Labour to block No 10’s plans. The Telegraph reports Conservative rebels join forces with rivals amid fears growing opposition could force the Government into reinstating ban

Fears for North Nottinghamshire’s wildlife and landscape after fracking ban overturned. Worksop Guardian reports concerns from Nottinghamshire Wildlife Trust about the future off the region’s landscape and wildlife after the ban on fracking was overturned.

Anti-frackers as bad as anti-vaxxers, says Tory former Cabinet minister. The National reports comments by Lord Lilley who said “scaremongering” by anti-fracking campaigners was as bad as that by anti-vaxxers.

Tory MP from Berkshire suggests fracking in ‘northern reaches of Scotland’. The Press and Journal reports on comments by Laura Farris, MP for Newbury, in Berkshire, who told BBC’s Politics Live on Wednesday that fracking could be explored in northern Scotland to get around community opposition in built-up areas.

Revised Saltfleetby spud date. Angus Energy announces it has delayed the spud date for its Saltfleetby sidetrack from 20 October to 24-26 October 2022.

Banning flights on UK routes with fast rail links ‘could cut flight emissions by third’. The Guardian reports on a study by the thinktank, the Intergenerational Foundation, which found that banning flights on routes with a rail alternative under 4.5 hours would reduce emissions by 885 kilotonnes – a 33% reduction.

UK to miss net zero target without lifestyle changes, say peers. The FT and Guardian cover a report by a House of Lords committee, which says a third of UK emission reductions must come from behaviour changes.

Tuesday 11 October 2022

Egdon Resources challenged at appeal hearing over changes to Biscathorpe oil production plans. DrillOrDrop report

Lancashire councils cannot stop fracking from happening, says Rossendale leader. Lancashire Live reports comments by the Rossendale Borough Council leader that lifting the moratorium raises worries about public consent and could mean Lancashire councils will be powerless to stop fracking.

How to make a mess of an energy windfall tax. The FT reports that proposals to cap renewable companies’ UK revenues look set to be a mess. Writer Cat Rutter Pooley says the renewables industry has been spooked by the potential level of the UK cap, originally rumoured at £50-£50 per megawatt hour, when wholesale prices are above £400. The EU cap is E180. Reports also in the Belfast Telegraph

Kwasi Kwarteng’s secret meetings with Saudi oil firms revealed . The Guardian reports exclusively that the then business secretary had undisclosed meetings with senior executives of Saudi Aramco, the world’s biggest oil producer, Sabic, the world’s fourth biggest petrochemical company and Alfanar Group, an industrial conglomerate.

Nord Stream leak may have been largest methane emission ever recorded. New Scientist reports that the Nord Stream breach has released 56,000-155,000 tonnes of methane into the atmosphere, making it among the largest methane emissions ever recorded from a single point.

Monday 10 October 2022

Questions over local benefit from Cuadrilla’s fracking fund. DrillOrDrop analysis of who benefitted from the UK’s only fracking community benefit fund.

BBC admits “inaccurate” claim on flagship news programme about fracking earthquake fears. DrillOrDrop report on complaint over Today programme claim that fracking earthquake fears had been “debunked” by scientists.

Tameside leaders angered by Prime Minister’s U-turn on fracking ban. Quest Media reports that the council agreed a motion to reiterate the borough’s opposition to fracking (full council meeting on 4 October 2022)

Operation Rolling Blunder? From fracking to solar, government opens up new fronts in ‘attack on nature’. Business Green reports that proposals to block solar farms, revive fracking, and roll back planning rules are further fuelling the impression the government really is engaged in an ‘attack on nature’.

Rees-Mogg’s energy crisis solution draws climate warnings. S W Londoner reports on the climate reaction to plans for new oil and gas licences.

Minister criticises lifting of fracking ban. The United Reformed Church reports that a missional discipleship mentor has criticised the government’s decision to lift the ban on fracking.

Newdigate residents recount memories of ‘frightening’ earthquakes as Government lifts ban on fracking. Surrey Live reports Newdigate residents have spoken of their concerns following the Government’s decision to lift the ban on fracking. Between 2018 and 2019, the village, six miles from Dorking, was subject to more than two dozen earthquakes as high as 3.1 on the Richter scale.

Ministers hope to ban solar projects from most English farms. The Guardian reports that the new environment secretary, Ranil Jayawardena, who opposes solar farms on agricultural land, has asked officials to redefine “best and most versatile” land to include the middling-to-low category 3b. The FT says the move risks £20bn of investment.

Turn down the heating: France unveils ‘ambitious’ energy saving plan. Climate Home News reports that French people and businesses are encouraged to take shorter showers, turn down thermostats and car pool.

3,200 excess deaths in England and Wales during heatwave summer, government data confirms. Business Green reports on the links between mortality and high temperatures.

Giant methane leak from Nord Stream pipeline is detected from SPACE: Satellite images show potent greenhouse gas leaking at a rate of 174,000 pounds per hour. The Daily Mail reports methane gas leaking from the Nord Stream 2 pipeline off the coast of Sweden has been recorded by satellites.

European Airlines Misleading Fliers With Carbon-Neutral Claims, Research Finds. Yale Environment 360 reports on new research on eight airlines (Air France, British Airways, EasyJet, KLM, Lufthansa, Ryanair, SAS, and Wizz Air) finds that carbon offsets offered by Europe’s leading airlines are of poor quality and do not promise to curb emissions over the long term.

Sunday 9 October 2022

Anger as Truss ignores her climate advisers’ call for energy-saving drive. The Observer reports Liz Truss ignored the advice of the Climate Change Committee, which last month outlined the need for a “comprehensive energy advice service” to reduce demand.

National Trust chief says Truss is “demonising” conservationists. The Sunday Times reports that Hilary McGrady, has threatened to mobilise her 5.7m members in a mass campaign to defend the environment.

Ineos presented with £1.2bn bill to make Defender’s rival. City Am reports that Ineos Automotive, which is seeking to build a rival to the Land Rover Defender, has doubled its losses to €212m (£193m) in the year to December 2021, ranking up around £440m in the five years since its inception. 

Saturday 8 October 2022

Analysis: UK’s gas imports would be 13% lower if it had not ‘cut the green crap’. CarbonBrief reports that UK gas imports would have been cut by 65 terawatt hours if government support for energy efficiency and renewables had continued, instead of being rolled back after then-prime minister David Cameron told ministers in 2013 to “cut the green crap”.

Gorgeous, sleepy West Lancs village where fracking chatter shows no sign of fading. Lancs Live reports from Haskayne, near where Aurora Resources sought to drill and frack in 2019.

Why the country needs to back fracking and become energy independent – Charles McAllister. The Yorkshire Post carries an article by Charles McAllister, of the shale industry lobbyist, UKOOG. He writes:

“As the current cost of living crisis hits families across the country hard, it is absurd that we continue to import gas from other countries thousands of miles away while ignoring the gas we have under our feet.”

Liz Truss facing rural rebellion over anti-nature ‘growth’ push. The Observer reports that wildlife charities, Tory former ministers and millions of ordinary people raise alarm over the environment and the prime minister’s “dash for growth”.

Friday 7 October 2022

“No fracking” tracking. DrillOrDrop reports on council decisions and statements opposing fracking.

Angus Energy seeks to import radioactive waste for disposal at Brockham in Surrey. DrillOrDrop report

Households could be handed £1,000 to approve fracking in their area. The Telegraph reports on a plan backed by ministers to secure local consent. Also reported by The Times, The Sun, Energy Live News (10/10/22)

Fracking’s back on the menu, but is it half-baked?. Politics Home reports thoughts by Dr Laurence Stamford who said:

“the logical way forward is an increased roll-out of low carbon energy generation in the form of onshore/offshore wind, solar and arguably nuclear, accompanied by a vast and immediate programme to insulate the UK’s homes and retrofit heat pumps wherever possible. Fracking is an unnecessary distraction.”

UK will not urge public to cut energy use, minister says. Reuters reports comments by climate minister Graham Stuart that Britain is not asking people to use less energy, despite a warning from National Grid that homes and businesses could face planned blackouts this winter.

Almost 900 blocks up for grabs as 33rd North Sea oil and gas licensing round launched. Energy Voice reports on the start of the latest offshore licence round.

Green groups warn of legal action as UK launches new oil and gas licensing round. Business Green reports a warning from Greenpeace that the “possibly unlawful” licensing round will do little to enhance the UK’s energy security or reduce household bills.

Scotland wants ‘stringent climate checks’ on North Sea oil and gas projects as UK doles out licences. Proactive Investors reports comments by Scotland’s first minister, Nicola Sturgeon, who called for “stringent climate compatibility checks” on new North Sea energy projects and called Downing Street’s planning “haphazard”.

Let King Charles go to campaign on climate as head of the Commonwealth. The Telegraph reports that King Charles should attend COP27.

Thursday 6 October 2022

Guest post: Who are the real Luddites? Helen Savage reports in a guest post for DrillOrDrop from the West Sussex village of Balcombe on government support for fracking.

New oil and gas at odds with green goals – report. BBC News reports on research by Global Energy Monitor which found that if all the North Sea’s reserves were extracted and burnt it would lead to the UK exceeding its legally-binding carbon budget by almost two fold.

Liz Truss’s obstinacy spells trouble for energy too. FT columnist Cat Rutter Pooley says Liz Truss’s obstinacy has made her government’s action on energy prices more expensive than it needs to be. She says the government has displayed “an enduring lack of ambition on energy efficiency” and has “kept quiet for too long about what consumers can do to ease the coming squeeze”.

Government faces backlash from its own MPs after lifting fracking ban. Today’s Conveyancer reports backbench Conservative MPs are set to oppose the government’s lifting of the moratorium on fracking.

Prime Minister Liz Truss Accepted £5,000 From Climate Denial Funder. DeSmog reports that Lord Vinson is one of the few known donors to the Global Warming Policy Foundation, which advocates for fracking via its campaign arm Net Zero Watch.

Wednesday 5 October 2022

No F-word in PM’s speech – but heckled by anti-fracking campaigners. DrillOrDrop report on Liz Truss’s speech to the Conservative conference in Birmingham. Also reported in The Guardian, INews, Business Green

We don’t want fracking” – East Yorkshire tells government. DrillOrDrop report on the vote by East Riding Council on fracking. BBC News (6/10/22) ITV News (6/10/22)

Egdon makes late offer before appeal hearing on Biscathorpe oil production in Lincolnshire Wolds AONB. DrillOrDrop report

Some Tory MPs Suspect Fracking Plans Could Be “Quietly Shelved”. Politics Home reports “a  growing belief that the government’s plans to boost fracking could be quietly shelved has emerged at Conservative party conference in Birmingham after Tory MPs and activists expressed opposition to the plans”.

Council leader pledges to protect communities against fracking in North Lincolnshire. North Lincolnshire Council quotes the leader, Cllr Rob Waltham, that he will back communities who do not want fracking.

Should residents have their say on fracking in Lancashire with an official vote? Lancashire Live asks readers for their views on how to measure local consent.

Jacob Rees-Mogg’s taking ‘constituents for granted’ over ‘delight’ at back garden fracking. Bristol World reports that Jacob Rees-Mogg has been accused of taking his constituents for granted after saying he would be delighted to allow fracking in his back garden.

Unlike Jacob Rees-Mogg, Britain won’t take fracking lying down. Caroline Lucas, writing in the Guardian, responds to the business secretary’s claim that only she and “the socialists” do not support his plans.

Extinction Rebellion holds ‘die in’ at Aberdeen University with demands to abandon oil and gas research. Energy Voice reports that climate protesters demanded Aberdeen University stop supporting new oil fields and abandon industry research.

UK power companies threatened with legislation to limit revenues. The FT reports that the UK government has threatened energy companies with a cap on the revenues they make from sky-high wholesale power prices – unless they strike voluntary deals with the state.

A J Lucas application for quotation of new shares. Cuadrilla’s Australian owner, A J Lucas, has applied for quotation of almost 180 million shares to be quoted on the country’s stock exchange.

Tuesday 4 October 2022

Union Jack increases stake in Egdon Resources, one of the country’s leading shale gas licence-holders. DrillOrDrop

Odey steps up bet on fracking after UK government lifts ban. The FT reports Odey is increasing its stake in IGas.

Bishop urges government not to lift fracking ban. The Tablet reports a call by the Catholic Bishop John Arnold of Salford for the government to rethinking lifting the ban on fracking. He told BBC Radio Lancashire the process was “clearly a threat to the local population, their property and their wellbeing”. He added: “It seems to me a very short-term look at a solution on energy.”

‘Government is listening to concerns over fracking’, says Fylde MP Mark Menzies. The Blackpool Gazette reports comments by Fylde MP Mark Menzies that the government is listening to concerns about fracking the region.

Thousands sign Wirral petition call for ban on fracking. The Wirral Globe reports that a petition against fracking on Wirral’s shoreline has been signed by almost 50,000 people in five days. Also in the Birkenhead News

Liz Truss and Kwasi Kwarteng are not out of the woods yet. Andrew Neil, writing for Mail Online, says backbench Conservative MPs:

“don’t seem that enthused about fracking for gas either, even though after Putin’s attack on underwater gas pipelines the case for it – to ensure security of supply – is stronger than ever.

“Truss says she wants fracking but promises it won’t happen without local consent. In which case, it won’t happen. Her Government is simply not strong enough to insist the national interest overrides local interests.”

Liz Truss refuses to rule out new schools and GP surgeries for fracking areas. The Yorkshire Post reports the prime minister has refused to deny suggestions that communities could be bought off to allow fracking in their back garden in exchange for new GP surgeries and schools.

Why fracking cannot solve Europe’s energy crisis. The Economist reports that exploiting the continent’s shale gas reserves would be harder than it was in America.

Fracking: the simple test for whether it should happen in the UK. The Conversation reports a future for fracking should be determined by a system of formal compensation and consent.

Fracking is NOT the answer to the energy crisis. Anthony Day, writing in the York Press, says the energy crisis can be solved more quickly and cheaply with existing technologies for renewables and storage as long as demand is managed.

Rees-Mogg’s neighbours fail to share ‘delight’ at back garden fracking. The Guardian reports that few in the business secretary’s Somerset constituency share his enthusiasm but some do agree with the need for unpopular measures.

Fossil fuels: is the world on track for moving past coal, oil and gas production? Carbon Brief reports on a conference in Oxford that discussed how the world could get rid of fossil fuels, the central challenge to solving climate change.

With UK’s next licensing round around the corner, activists demand a stop to new oil & gas. Offshore Energy reports that activists from Just Stop Oil have set up roadblocks in Westminster, demanding a halt to new fossil fuel projects and investments in the UK.

Shell boss says taxing energy firms to help the poor is ‘inevitable’. BBC News reports comments by Ben van Beurden that taxes on firms within the oil and gas industry are “inevitable” to help the poorest people. Sky News

Tory plans to relax laws protecting wildlife condemned by nature groups. The Times reports ministers are being urged to rethink reforms to the planning system that would allow developers in effect to ignore regulations protecting nature. The paper says 22 countryside, environment and heritage groups are to tell Simon Clarke, the levelling-up secretary, that they are deeply concerned by measures in last month’s growth plan.

Monday 3 October 2022

Jacob Rees-Mogg rules out local referendums on fracking and says shale gas companies could canvas door-door. DrillOrDrop report on comments by the business secretary at the Conservative conference. He also said he’d welcome fracking in his back garden. Also reported by The Guardian, ENDS Report and the Independent

Arguments over Biscathorpe oil production to be made at appeal hearing. DrillOrDrop report on the chance for the two sides in the planning dispute in Lincolnshire to put their case.

People “strongly in favour” of using old gas wells for geothermal scheme. DrillOrDrop report on consultation over plans in Ryedale area of North Yorkshire.

Rees-Mogg tells Tories he’d welcome fracking in his back garden. The Guardian reports comments by Jacob Rees-Mogg that only “socialists and Caroline Lucas” don’t like fracking. He also said companies that wanted to drill a new fracking well could “go around, door to door, as politicians do at elections and ask people if they would consent.”

“Then they have to go around to an identifiable community and if they get 50% plus one in favour then they should be able to go ahead.”

Also reported by the Independent and the Telegraph

Not too late to insulate homes this winter, says Lord Deben. The Guardian reports comments by the chair of the Climate Change Committee that tackling the cost of living crisis requires insulating British homes as a matter of urgency and deploying renewable energy generation faster,

Global gas markets to remain tight next year amid supply squeeze-IEA. Reuters reports comments by the International Energy Agency that global gas markets are expected to remain tight next year as Russian pipeline gas supplies dwindle and gas demand falls in Europe.

Opposition mounts to fracking in the East Yorkshire after studies show prospective shale area through Howden, Bubwith, Pocklington, Driffield and Bridlington. The Yorkshire Post reports councillors and an MP have already called for East Yorkshire shale gas to stay underground.

Two areas of Derbyshire entirely covered by fracking licences. Derbyshire Live reports fracking has caused local concerns about earthquakes and pollution.

Fracking is a distraction that won’t lower gas prices. Ruth Edwards, Conservative MP for Rushcliffe writes in the New Statesman that scepticism about shale gas is based on true, conservative beliefs.

UK set to launch licensing including areas with fast-track development potential. Upstream Online reports that the North Sea Transition Authority set to unveil the acreage in the southern North Sea on offer.

UK energy regulator warns of ‘significant risk’ of gas shortage. Energy Voice reports the UK faces a “significant risk” of gas shortages this winter and could enter an emergency that would see power stations switched off, according to regulator Ofgem. BBC News

New homes built with gas boilers after developers lobby against green rules. Open Democracy reports that experts have accused developers of passing the buck, as households face huge bills to retrofit homes.

Attack on nature is a mistake Tories can avoid. William Hague, writing in The Times, says the party’s strong record on green issues risks being undermined by a proposed bonfire of environmental regulations.

Liz Truss putting environment ‘at risk’ with deregulation plans, says Stanley Johnson. The Independent reports Boris Johnson’s father has warned the government not to put vital environment protections at risk in the “mad dash” for economic growth.

Scrap UK’s Net Zero Target, Key Figure in Pro-Truss Think Tank Tells Tory Conference. DeSmog reports that Andy Mayer, chief operating officer at the Institute of Economic Affairs has called the legally-binding net zero target as “nonsense. He said energy security and affordability were more important.

UK ‘cannot afford net-zero’ commitments this year, Government minister Steve Baker says. INews reports that the founder of the Net Zero Scrutiny Group suggests scrapping range of net-zero commitments could save households £1,500 this year.

Cop27 host Egypt warns UK not to backtrack from climate agenda . The Guardian reports an unusual warning from the Egyptian government to the UK against backtracking from the global climate agenda.

Sunday 2 October 2022

Britons back Boris’ energy plans as Truss fracking poised to backfire: ‘Hugely unpopular’. The Express says polls shows Britons, including Conservative voters, don’t approve of fracking in their local community, even with the offer of discounted energy bills. It quotes research by Diffusion, which found support for fracking reached 29% among Conservative voters and 17% over all.

Jacob Rees-Mogg’s attempts to shame communities into backing fracking won’t work – David Behrens. In an opinion piece for the Yorkshire Post, David Behrens says even the scientists will tell you that the science is uncertain at best. So what is this government’s motivation in lifting the moratorium on fracking?

‘Fracking is going to create shockwaves’ The News and Star reports the decision to lift the moratorium on fracking was likely to be seen as immoral by future generations.

Give locals who back fracking money off their energy bills, says Tory party chairman. The Telegraph reports that Jake Berry hints at discounts for communities who consent to shale gas extraction in their area.

Government warned renewables were solution to energy crisis year before Truss gas push. The Independent reports on new documents which show the government was warned a year ago that renewables were the best solution to the energy crisis, before Liz Truss’s push for new oil and gas projects..

Saturday 1 October 2022

The shale reserves in East Yorkshire earmarked for fracking. The Hull Daily Mail reports that East Yorkshire lies in one of the four areas which geologists believe are sitting on top of potentially vast shale gas deposits.

Will the new Lord Lucan strike oil in Sussex? The Telegraph reports that George Lucan, of Angus Energy, could “strike lucky” at Balcombe but environmentalists will fight him all the way.

Fracking plans would ‘blow up local democracy’, campaigners say. The Yorkshire Post reports comments by campaigners who accuse the government of “blowing up democracy” through plans to bypass councils and poll households for fracking in exchange for money.

Energy crisis: Three ways fracking can “slash bills” as UK has enough gas to last 50 years. The Express reports comments by the gas industry lobbying group, UKOOG, on how domestric gas would cut bills.

Fracking can only be allowed if 50% of locals agree – Fylde MP. Mark Menzies says fracking should be allowed to go ahead if “a minimum of 50% of people… actively give consent” in their local community, BBC News reports

Thousands protests against soaring energy prices and climate crisis. The Press Association (via the Belfast Telegraph) reports thousands of activists in cities including London, Glasgow and Belfast, gathered across the country in protest against soaring energy prices and the climate crisis.

Liz Truss advised King Charles to stay away from Cop27 climate summit. The Telegraph reports that King Charles wanted to deliver a speech at the COP27 summit in Egypt but he consulted with officials and agreed not to go. The Guardian reports that the environment minister, Mark Spencer, said Prince William should attend the summit because the king now has “other priorities”. Also coverage by the Daily Mail , BBC News and Times.

1 reply »

  1. Seeing as B.P. sold all the gas to China in 2015, we will not be getting cheap gas, it is a con trick. They said the same thing to the American public when they began fracking over there, and they are still waiting for the cheap gas they were promised.
    Ultimately, it is the high levels of water depletion and degradation that will cause us problems

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