Councillors in Lancashire have delayed making a decision on whether the energy firm Cuadrilla can drill for shale gas at two areas in the county.
There was a large protest outside county hall in Preston by campaigners opposed to the drilling process known as fracking.
The council will now make a decision on the sites near Blackpool in two months' time.
County councillors have agreed to delay a decision on proposals for two new fracking sites in Lancashire.Read the full story ›
Energy company Cuadrilla say they are "committed to the exploration of shale gas in Lancashire".
The company issued a statement after Lancashire County Council agreed to defer a decision on planning applications to drill for gas in the county.
We recognise the careful consideration that Lancashire County Council has given and its subsequent agreement to our request to defer the determination of our planning applications for shale gas exploration at Preston New Road and Roseacre Wood. The additional information we have provided on further mitigation measures will, we believe, fully address the noise and traffic concerns raised by the Planning Officer’s in their recommendation to refuse planning permission for both sites.
This additional information will be assessed by the Planning Officers and there will now be an opportunity for the public to properly review and comment on this.
We remain committed to the exploration of shale gas in Lancashire.
The environmental group Greenpeace say Lancashire County Council should put the interest of communities ahead of the shale gas lobby.
"Allowing more time for Cuadrilla to tinker with their application is not going to change the fundamental fact that fracking is a massive gamble with low returns for the people of Lancashire.
"This deferral is just one more example of Cuadrilla’s aggressive lobbying of Lancashire county council to try and get its way despite overwhelming public opposition to fracking.
"The councillors should look again at the mounting evidence of fracking’s environmental, health and climate impacts, and put the well-being of their communities before the interests of the shale lobby."
Councillors in Lancashire have agreed to a request from energy firm Cuadrilla to defer consideration of planning applications for two fracking sites in the county.
Lancashire county council are advised that they would be 'acting unlawfully' if they don't defer decision over Fracking at 2 sites.
Lancashire County Council has recommended decisions planning applications for fracking in the county are deferred.
It comes after the council broke for legal advice.
Anti-fracking protestors are reporting a "carnival atmosphere" at demonstrations at County Hall in Preston.
Lancashire County Council is meeting to decide the fate of applications to frack for shale gas in the county.
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Lancashire County Council has moved its meeting on planning applications at two sites in the county to a private room so that councillors can be given legal advice.
This means the press and public have been excluded from the meeting.