As fracking, and the controversy which surrounds it, moves a step closer to the region, many people admit that they are still unsure what it means.
So what exactly is fracking and why does it generate such strong feelings both for and against?
Richard Wilson has been looking at the science behind the controversial mining technique.
More top news
Heavy rain expected, also some snow in the forecast
Often very windy, especially as we head into Sunday, with rain or showers. Met Office 'Be Aware' warnings have been issued
Here is our essential guide to all things Christmas in the North East.