The south east region is primarily threatened by the potential for shale oil and gas extraction in the Weald & Wessex basins. Licences for coalbed methane (CBM) in East Kent and Underground Coal Gasification (UCG) in the Thames Estuary have been relinquished and the current activity is further west in Sussex, Surrey and Hampshire. In particular the British Geological Survey (BGS) and a company called UK Oil & Gas (UKOG) have highlighted the potential to extract shale/tight oil at sites across the Weald Basin.
For communities living in the Weald, the tight/shale oil threat is similar to that posed by other forms of fracking. All unconventional fossil fuels require much greater amounts of extraction effort, with massively increased environmental and social impacts. Tight/shale oil is trapped within low permeability rocks through which it cannot easily flow, so densely packed horizontal wells & stimulation (e.g. hydraulic fracturing) are required to extract the oil. Tight oil areas like the Bakken & Eagle Ford Shale in the US have been industrialised in a few short years by the drilling of thousands of wells, HGV’s, new pipelines and waste sites.
This threat is uniting communities across the South East to fight for their future. There are sites with activity and new planning applications at: Horse Hill, Leith Hill, Brockham, Markwells Wood, Broadford Bridge & Balcombe.
See Fracking The Weald: The Growing Tight Oil Threat for more details.
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|UKOG||Markwells Wood||Shale (Proposed)||Exploration||None||SDNP/16/04679/CM||20/09/2016||TBA||Application||OBJECTION GUIDANCE|
|Horse Hill Developments||Land off Horse Hill||Shale (Drilled)||Exploration||Empty||2016/0189||14/10/2016||TBA||Application||OBJECT NOW|
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