Fracking firms invited to drill under half of the UK: Government map reveals sites from Devon to Aberdeen under consideration
- By BEN SPENCER 18 December 2013
More than 40 per cent of Britain is to be opened up for fracking as the hunt for shale gas gathers pace. A new map reveals the huge swathes of the country where energy firms will be invited to drill. Stretching from Devon to Aberdeen, the map, published yesterday by the Government, shows the extent of the new areas under consideration for exploratory work. These include much of the South Coast, the Midlands and most of Yorkshire.
Fracking has already proved to be hugely controversial, sparking protests in Balcombe in West Sussex when exploratory drilling began this summer.
Green groups opposed to the technology said the announcement ‘cast a dark shadow’ over the communities where fracking could take place.
But Energy Minister Michael Fallon said the energy reserves had the potential to transform Britain’s economy.
A new licensing round will start next summer, with companies expected to be granted up to 150 exploratory licences. The new map reveals 39,000 square miles of land to be considered for exploration, covering 42 per cent of the country.
At the moment companies have licences to drill in 7,300 square miles, mostly in Lancashire, Sussex, Derbyshire and Nottinghamshire. Mr Fallon said: ‘Today marks the next step in unlocking the potential of shale gas in our energy mix. It is an exciting prospect, which could bring growth, jobs and energy security.’Fracking firms invited to drill under half of the UK | Mail Online
And just a couple of comments:
Interestingly, a US company by the name of 'Devon' refers to safe methods of fracking:
Hydraulic fracturing: A 60-year track record of safety
The UK government says the South-West is under consideration:
Devon, Dorset and Somerset - but not Cornwall - to be open for fracking
Devon, Dorset and Somerset - but not Cornwall - to be open for fracking | Exeter Express and Echo
There have been concerns expressed about how it will affect Devon:
Devon: frackable – see the lights go on in developers’ eyes … | Sidmouth Independent News