County councillors today rejected fracking firm Cuadrilla’s plans to keep a compound on farmland near Grange Road, Singleton, for a further three years for pressure testing and seismic monitoring.
Officers had recommended the council’s development control committee approve the proposals, which attracted more than 300 objections.
Friends of the Earth’s Energy Campaigner Donna Hume said: “This decision is yet another blow for Cuadrilla. Refusing the application was the right decision by Lancashire County Council, as it is clear that the people of Lancashire do not support shale gas extraction.
“The council must say no to fracking anywhere in Lancashire and turn down Cuadrilla’s two applications which will be considered in the next few months.
“Fracking is not compatible with tackling climate change, and carries serious risks to the local environment and people’s health - that’s why the Scottish and Welsh Governments have both called moratoriums.
“The Government in Westminster must follow their lead and instead pursue renewable energy and energy efficiency, which will create more jobs and help us avoid devastating damage to our climate.”
A Cuadrilla spokesman said:“We are perplexed and disappointed by the decision of Lancashire County Council’s Development Control Committee (DCC) to refuse our planning application for Grange Hill. The refusal was contrary to the advice of Lancashire County Council planning officers, the HSE and the EA all of whom recommended it for approval.
“It is not clear what the technical basis of the Council’s decision was.As a consequence, the Grange Hill well appears to be in planning limbo since permission to plug the well and restore the site has been refused. We are awaiting clarification from the Council before deciding on next steps.”
Cuadrilla’s applications to drill for shale gas at sites at Rosecare Wood and Little Plumpton,near Blackpool, have yet to be considered by the county council.