Unsupported browser

For a better experience, please update your browser to its latest version.

Your browser appears to have cookies disabled. For the best experience of this website, please enable cookies in your browser

We'll assume we have your consent to use cookies, for example so you won't need to log in each time you visit our site.
Learn more

Government plans launched to simplify deep drilling activities

Department of Energy and Climate Change (Decc) has launched a consultation process for government about proposals to simplify the existing procedure for shale gas and deep geothermal underground drilling access.

According to Decc, the new proposals would simplify procedures which are costly time-consuming and disproportionate for new methods of underground drilling and benefit the local communities affected by the work.

Decc has said that acceptance of the new plans will enable oil, gas and deep geothermal companies will be able to explore potential resources and provide a voluntary community payment for access.

The proposals include underground right of access for shale gas and deep geothermal operations below 300m, a voluntary payment of £20,000 per lateral well and a clear notification system to alert local people to the planned project.

“Britain needs more home-grown energy and shale development will bring jobs and business opportunities,” said business and energy minister Michael Fallon. “We are keen for shale and geothermal exploration to go ahead while protecting residents through the robust regulation that is in place.

“These proposals allow shale and geothermal development while offering a fair deal for communities in return for underground access at depths so deep they will have no negative impact on landowners.”

Decc has emphasised that companies looking to exploit shale deposits or geothermal energy will still need to obtain the necessary permissions for extraction.

Consultation on the proposals is now open for the next 12 weeks and Decc will consider the feedback before government plans the next step.

Have your say

You must sign in to make a comment

Please remember that the submission of any material is governed by our Terms and Conditions and by submitting material you confirm your agreement to these Terms and Conditions. Links may be included in your comments but HTML is not permitted.