UK Shale Faces Another Legal Hurdle

  • Date: 05/09/16
  • Emily Gosden, The Daily Telegraph

Britain’s efforts to get fracking for shale gas have suffered a fresh delay after it emerged a legal challenge against the only approved project will not be heard until the end of November.

Shale explorer Third Energy had hoped it might start work at its Kirby Misperton site in North Yorkshire as soon as the end of this year, after getting planning consent in May.

But green groups Friends of the Earth and Frack Free Ryedale sought a judicial review of North Yorkshire County Council’s decision, claiming councillors failed to assess the impact of the project on climate change and assess financial safeguards against environmental damage.

A date has now been set to hear the challenge on November 22 and 23 – later than had been expected.

It is understood that even if the challenge is dismissed there is now no chance of Third Energy fracking this year and work may not get underway until well into 2017.

Only once the legal challenge is resolved can the company get final sign-off it requires for gas drilling from the Government, and then sign contracts with suppliers for the equipment it needs, which could take months.

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