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Energy company confirms plans to undertake a shale gas survey in the East Midlands

Photo: Nottinghamshire County Council

Nottinghamshire County Council has received formal notification from energy company INEOS that it intends to undertake a shale gas survey across parts of Nottinghamshire for six months. starting in early June.

The company has submitted details about the areas to be surveyed, which extends into Derbyshire and how the survey will be undertaken.

Subject to certain restrictions and giving prior notification to the County Council, planning permission is not required for the survey as Government planning rules state that it is ‘permitted development’.

The survey will help INEOS to gain a better understanding of the geology and rock formations below the ground to understand where shale gas might be located. This will help the company to identify sites where future shale gas development could be undertaken.

Subject to certain restrictions, INEOS is allowed to undertake the seismic survey without planning permission in line with national planning rules. However, any further development, including test drilling to explore for shale gas below ground, will require full planning permission.

The County Council welcomes the decision by the company to avoid undertaking any surveying within the Sherwood Forest National Nature Reserve and other areas of special environmental interest.

– Sally Gill, Planning Manager for Nottinghamshire County Council

INEOS has confirmed to the County Council that no seismic surveying will be undertaken within the following areas:

  • The Sherwood National Nature Reserve, including the Sherwood Forest National Nature Reserve
  • Special Areas of Conservation.
  • Sites of Special Scientific Interest including Thoresby Lake, Welbeck Lake, Hills and Holes and Sookholme Brook, WarsopIn
The Sherwood National Nature Reserve will not be used for seismic surveying Credit: PA

To date, Nottinghamshire County Council has received no planning applications for hydraulic fracturing in the county.