Doncaster fracking plans halted as council asks for more information

The possible site for exploratory shale gas drilling in Misson.
The possible site for exploratory shale gas drilling in Misson.
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The council has requested more information about a planning application in a Doncaster village, that could pave the way for the controversial process of fracking for shale gas.

This comes after Nottinghamshire County Council received more than 2,000 responses during public consultation on the plans, which if successful would see energy giant IGas explore for shale gas on land off Springs Road in Misson.

The council says it has requested additional information on areas such as site selection and sequential testing, surface water run-off and ecology.

A second-round of public consultation will take place after the additional information requested by the council has been provided.

Sally Gill, Planning Manager for Nottinghamshire County Council said: “It’s perfectly normal for the council to request further information from an applicant as part of the planning process, especially in the case of a complex application like this one. This process provides the applicant with an opportunity to address any concerns raised and provide additional information, not included in the initial application, which answers questions raised during the consultation.”

The application is for the development of a shale gas well site which would involve the drilling of two exploratory shale gas wells - one vertical and one horizontal - along with ancillary works.

The vertical well would be drilled to a depth of approximately 3,500 metres and, subject to the results of the vertical well, a second well may be drilled, initially vertically before being directed horizontally in a southerly direction within one of the potentially productive horizons. At its peak there would be an average of 18 HGV and 10 light vehicles visiting the site per day.

IGas is applying to carry out test drilling to check the suitability of the rock for shale gas extraction. The application does not include any proposals for hydraulic fracturing, known as ‘fracking’.

The County Council sought the views of over 40 organisations during the initial consultation period between 28 October and 23 December. These included statutory consultees, neighbouring local authorities and landowners, County Council departments, national Government departments and agencies and wildlife organisations.

Letters were also sent to nearby residents and notices posted in the local area highlighting how they can get involved and register their comments about the proposals.